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Nasus Build Guide by Rogue Privateer

Not Updated For Current Season

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League of Legends Build Guide Author Rogue Privateer

Very Serious AP Nasus Guide

Rogue Privateer Last updated on November 14, 2015
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Team 1

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.


Natural Talent
Bounty Hunter
Battering Blows
Piercing Thoughts

Ferocity: 12

Dangerous Game

Cunning: 18

Tough Skin
Runic Armor
Veteran's Scars
Legendary Guardian

Resolve: 0

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Hello people!
My name is Baguette Good, and I would like to share with you my non-revolutionary Jesus ( Nasus) guide. I have been playing League of Legends since Draven's release and am currently placed in Plat 4 (End of Season 5) on the OCE server, not an impressive feat as I understand. Nasus is a champion I find myself continuously coming back to, I have a strong record with him and enjoy playing him, as I want you to do also.
Now before you down-vote my dank guide for deviating from the meta I invite you to read through my reasoning behind the specific build paths, etc. that I have chosen, and perhaps even (as I imagine it is the reason you are here) try out the identified itemization choices.

Also please remember that feedback is always appreciated so feel free to visit the discussion page and drop an observational or helpful opinion. ^^

Why I Made This Guide

This build in its generality attempts to explore other options behind Nasus kit instead of focusing completely on the farming side of his skill set. Now I do realize these build paths are not as strong as what you might call 'original' or 'generic' builds however that's not the point of this guide. As I've already noted this specific Nasus guide exists to highlight optional build choices that are available thanks to Nasus Ability Power scaling and his proficient short range AoE (Area of Effect) skill set.

also i was bored

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Pros and Cons


    - Strong late game and good scaling
    - Synergises well with all-in team compositions
    - Very good in 1v1 situations
    - Extremely weak to early harassment
    - Surprisingly easy to kite while wither is on cool-down
    - Relies heavily on farm

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Hover over the highlighted abilities to learn more!

Soul Eater (Passive) - Notice how the base life-steal increases every SIX levels, this means that Nasus finds it surprisingly easy to stay in lane at all stages of the game (lmao) not that you should be in lane all game. This passive is extremely helpful for coming off on the good side of a trade even if you took more damage than the enemy as you can easily heal off of nearby minions.

Siphoning Strike (First ability/Q) - This ability is the reason why a lot of players will call Nasus 'overpowered' etc. The bonus damage is applied to the life-steal grant from Nasus passive and this can be increased further with the purchase of Sheen. The stacked damage granted from farming Siphoning Strike is not only useful for killing stuff but also for destroying towers!
Remember that most good Nasus players are known for having multitudes of stacks on their Siphoning Strike before a games end.

Wither (Second ability/W) - Even after some specific nerfs targeting this ability it remains a core part of Nasus potential for #winning. It offers a single target slow on both the Attack Speed and Movement Speed of an enemy, this boosts Nasus aptitude to chase, run away etc.
Generally you want to use your Wither on the enemy ADC (Attack Damage Carry) during team-fights, however if the opposing ADC has little presence you will be better off using this on the enemy teams most useful player.

Spirit Fire (Third ability/E) - Maxing this ability while building Ability Power items is immensely useful for harassing your opponent and coming off on top of trades because it does a surprisingly HUGE amount of damage. It's also worth noting the armor reduction that Spirit Fire provides not only for you but also for your team!

Fury of the Sands (Ultimate ability/R) - Keep in mind this Ultimate has a short but noticeable cast time which often leads to being killed before you can 'pop-it'. The Area of Effect damage granted by Fury of the Sands is amplified by building Ability Power items and is increased by 1% for every 100 Ability Power that you purchase, but remember the maximum amount of damage you can deal to an enemy per second is 240.

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For masteries I found it highly necessary to get the bonus damage from Oppressor , as well as the bonus five percent cool-down reduction from Intelligence . Taking Stormraider's Surge as a key stone will also give you some handy bonus movement speed when dealing enough damage with your Siphoning Strike.

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Greater Seal of Armor

Greater Glyph of Magic Resist

Greater Quintessence of Ability Power

Greater Mark of Magic Penetration

Greater Quintessence of Cooldown Reduction

When choosing rune sets you have quite a number of options with Nasus as he uses a lot of bonuses to help him throughout the game, but popular choices will always include 9x Seal of Armor and 9x Glyph of Magic Resist.
Runes to consider:
- 3x Life-Steal Quints
- 1/2x Movement Speed or Cool-Down Reduction Quints
- 9x Hybrid Penetration Marks
- 1-3x Cool-Down Reduction or/and Scaling Cool-Down Reduction Glyphs

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Skill Sequence

Whether you should max Siphoning Strike or Spirit Fire first depends on which build path you take, of course maxing Siphoning Strike first will always be a reasonable option, however if you want to make the most out of your chosen itemization then I recommend looking at what's best for the build you run with ( Siphoning Strike for AD and Spirit Fire for AP).
Maxing Wither second is not something I can argue with, it's an extremely useful ability for a number of situations, however in order to maximize your damage I recommend maxing out Siphoning Strike and Spirit Fire first. On the other hand, if you're against an Attack Speed based lane opponent, for example Shyvana/ Quinn etc. then I would highly recommend maxing Wither second.

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Champion Counters

Top Lane

- Danger Level: 7/10
- Any decent Jayce player will have an easy time laning against Nasus, I'll stress the need to avoid his Shock Blast whether amplified by Acceleration Gate or otherwise.

- Danger Level: 7/10
- A mechanically aware Vladimir poses a serious threat thanks to sustain equal in power to Nasus himself made worse due to a larger range.

- Danger Level: 5/10
- Not every Irelia will pose a serious threat to Nasus, if she chooses to harass you, allow her to do so while exchanging auto attacks as you can easily out-sustain her after any minor engagement. Take her mana and be happy.

- Danger Level: 6/10
- Teemo maybe annoying for a little while but once you have a certain amount of Magic Resistance it comes to a stage where you can use Wither and take chunks of health from him. Key point here is stay out of his Auto Attack range.

- Danger Level: 7/10
- Mordekaiser's low health-ability costs can be easily mitigated through certain rune/mastery setups making him an effective lane bully against champions like Nasus, however he will often find himself pushed towards your tower leading to easy ganks.

- Danger Level: 5/10
- Darius is not a relatively simple lane opponent for Nasus, a good player will use Decimate at max range when you go to last hit. If you want to have an easier time against Darius freeze just before your tower range, however in some cases this will not stop him from killing you.

There's a lot of other match-ups that I could talk about in detail but if I was to summarize how to survive lane phase, it would be to build defensive items to mitigate your lane opponents damage.
(Early Spirit Visage/ Sunfire Cape).

Mid Lane

- Danger Level: 6/10
- Nasus mid can do surprisingly little against Annie because of her stun ( Pyromania) and her ability to farm continuously with her Disintegrate. You can however harass her with your Spirit Fire which will do notable amounts of damage at higher ranks.

- Danger Level: 5/10
- Syndra can be very annoying due to the amount of utility and burst offered by her kit, as always I would recommend harassing her with Spirit Fire.

- Danger Level: 3/10
- One of the least annoying picks against Nasus any relative amount of armor can subside Zed's mid-late game damage.

I guess mid lane really comes down to who can harass the most, and seeing as very few people are used to the amount of damage Spirit Fire puts out, this shouldn't be an entirely difficult task to accomplish.

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The Arch-Mage:
- I've read some other Ability Power Nasus guides that recommend building Rod of Ages and I understand why. However this is an 'early-game' item that you're building on a 'late-game' champion, this means you're spending a lot of gold on something that you will barely use which will cripple your late-game.
- If you find yourself lacking in health consider purchasing Rylai's Crystal Scepter as it compliments your kit more than Rod of Ages.
- You may consider swapping out Lich Bane for Iceborn Gauntlet especially if the enemy team is heavy on AD, or if the opposing Mid Laner is building Attack Damage.
- Buying Zhonya's Hourglass will compliment Fury of the Sands especially in Team Fight situations, just make sure you time the use of its active well.
- Purchasing Liandry's Torment will increase the damage done by Fury of the Sands but will also compliment the use of Spirit Fire
- DFG no longer exists

-This is a Top lane 'Hybrid' build that is put together specifically to compliment the entirety of Nasus kit, therefore it makes use of both AOE and DOT items, ( Sunfire Cape, Ravenous Hydra, Liandry's Torment). Because of this I will outline the possibility of taking out Trinity Force and Athene's Unholy Grail and swapping them with with other armaments like Iceborn Gauntlet and Randuin's Omen

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Summoner Spells

Flash - There are a lot of champions in the mid lane that I would recommend taking Flash against simply to avoid certain aspects of their kit, this includes champions such as Zed, Xerath, Ahri etc. I would also take Flash occasionally in top lane against champions such as Jarvan IV.

Teleport - Considering Nasus is susceptible to poke and is often forced to preemptively recall , this Summoner Spell will help you get back to lane fast and continue stacking Siphoning Strike. Even if you are not being forced out of lane you can use Teleport to help bot lane take Dragon/Tower etc.

Ghost - Another common Summoner Spell for Nasus, I recommend taking Ghost because it works well with the use of both Fury of the Sands and Wither. It's also good for chasing and running away!

Ignite - Useful for securing kills that might get away, Nasus doesn't necessarily need Ignite as his kit helps him chase down enemy champions, amplified by the use of Ghost. However taking Ignite will increase the amount of DOT (Damage Over Time) that Nasus deals.

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Lane Phase

Laning Phase is always an important part of every game, and its a stage that can make or break Nasus.
As Nasus your laning phase will have two important parts:
1. Getting stacks on Siphoning Strike
2. Not dying :^)

Soul Eater is your best friend in lane thanks to the helpfulness offered by massive amounts of life-steal, which lets you stay in lane to continuously stack Siphoning Strike. However there will be more than one occasion where you run out of mana, this can be prevented by purchasing an early Doran's Ring or Chalice of Harmony, otherwise don't abuse your abilities.
It's common for Nasus to be harassed by his lane opponent and sometimes even be forced to recall back to base, this is a strong and exemplified reason to take Teleport as a Summoner Spell.

A good idea in the early laning phase is to freeze your lane just before your tower range, this will allow you to farm without the threat of ganks and will also let you stay within the relative safety of your tower. If you need to know exactly when the enemies minions will reach the lane then take a look at where your own minions are on the map.

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Mid Game

What you do in the mid game will depend on how well you have done so far in lane. If you are behind the standard 400 stacks at 20 minutes don't be alarmed, continue to stack at a reasonable pace and/or purchase more Cool-Down Reduction in order to get more stacks for Siphoning Strike.
If your team is already on the move at this stage of the game I recommend joining them in taking objectives if you can do so successfully, otherwise continue farming and remember to stay focused on the two important parts:
1. Getting stacks on Siphoning Strike
2. Not dying :^)

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Late Game!

Around this point you should have 700+ stacks but who cares right? Most people work out how many stacks they should have by the minute x20 (20 minutes = 400 stacks) but if you're working with your team to end the game this doesn't entirely matter.
There's a difference between being good at Nasus and being good at League of Legends.

At this point you can either solo split push and take towers or work with your team to push/take baron etc. but make sure you are working to end the game.

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Thank you for reading my non-revolutionary Jesus ( Nasus) guide, I appreciate the time you took to view it and I hope you have fun trying it out in the game itself!

If you have any questions you would like to ask me you can contact me at:
And if you have any advice/feedback you would like to share feel free to visit the discussion page and express your input.