The Ultimate Nasus Guide
Run down your enemies
October 17th, 2022 ⸱ 12 min read
Quick Nasus Top Build
You probably know two types of Nasus players: Inting and hard carry.
In this guide I will show you how you become the second type in most of your games, as long as you are lower than diamond.
I am a platinum toplane main (called Krygsverbrecher atm) on EUW and was in the Top1000
players on this server in Season 11, so I hope that I can show you a thing or two about this champion. Nasus
Why you should play Nasus
In low elo, there is no need to play complex champions like
, while most players don't even know how to open the browser to look for proper rune pages. Gangplank
That's why you should consider simpler champions like
or Nasus . With these champions there are less things you can do wrong, while they are just as powerful as any other laner. Garen
, you don't even need to win your lane, because you have a much better mid game than most of your lane opponents. Sadly, unlike the common opinion, Nasus is relatively bad in late game, because ADCs can kill tanks easier at this game stage and your stacks become less powerful (The difference in power between 600 and 700 stacks is minor). Because of this, you have to win the game or get a game winning advantage before around 30 minutes for Nasus to work. Nasus
A usual game looks like this:
You get slapped until you have 100
stacks and can afford , after that you can run down most of your opponents with ease. After killing your laner several times and getting to 300 stacks, you can start visiting the enemy botlane and 1v2ing them (unless they got fed by your own botlane). This breaks your enemies' mental and win the game. Siphoning Strike
But let's get more into detail:
Your weakness as
is mobility. That's why you use and as your summoner spells and max Nasus second. Your rune page can also help you on this matter. Wither
is the most important thing in the game until you hit around 300, at which point you more or less hit the peak of your relative power compared to your opponents. After this point, you should consider either teamfighting or splitpushing, depending on the situation and your own playstyle. Siphoning Strike
There are 3 rune pages I would recommand.
- Fleet Footwork
For your stat runes you should always take
first and either Scaling CDR or Armor for the other slots, depending on the matchup. Magic Resist
If you don't want to change your rune page for every game (which you should always do), the safest option is
second and Armor third. Scaling Bonus Health
This should be your standard rune page, because gives you bonus Movement Speed when attacking. This is essential, because
needs this extra speed to stay near his enemies. Combined with , , and (to counter stuns and slows), only few toplane champions exist who can escape from you. Nasus
combined with should cover all your mana needs, so you won't need . An alternative is for fights against multiple opponents, but mana is more valuable in most cases.
is useful on most toplaners, because it gives you the best overall damage increase. With the lifesteal gained from
, this also means more healing at low health. Soul Eater
is especially useful against ranged champions like
or Quinn , but is always the safest option for all phases of the game. An more offensive alternative is , which you can pick in easy matchups for a better mid game powerspike Teemo
gives you extra tenacity and slow resistance at low health and synergizes good with your movement speed buffs and . The other picks in the row, and , are also fine, but not as useful as .
The rune page is quite cheesy, but in some cases it can become very useful. The goal here is to get even more movement speed than with and a lot more summoner spells, at the cost of less tankiness. Therefore it is a aggressive option which needs practice.
To gain the most movement speed, take , (which works really well with your
), and . Not much to say here, just go fast. Wither
In the third row of you don't have another movement speed option, so just go for sustain and extra mana. Another option is , which comes in handy sometimes, but is more reliable.
With this rune page, you should also consider changing your summoner spells to and (yes, seriously), because they have low cooldown (meaning more ) and are great for surviving the early game, including dives. Also swap your spells with as soon as they are available, because everytime you do that the swap cooldown is reduced. This strategy provides great possibility for kills, especially when you swap to or .
Even though the other two pages should cover all your needs, i will give you another option which was popular a few months ago.
is used to improve your overall fighting capabilities resulting in less movement speed. It can be used against a bruiser heavy team with champions like
, Mordekaiser or Yorick , because the keystone gives you more power in 1v1 situations when your enemies don't have a lot of mobility themselves. Aatrox
The other runes are the same as the ones used for , with the exception of being exchanged for to provide further support for your fighting capabilities.
Other runes not yet mentioned
: Don't take it, you will get damaged a lot, resulting in this rune being useless while also interfering with your and runes.
: Only use case would be combined with the keystone to stack it faster, but even then is most likely better.
: Don't take it, you already get enough lifesteal from
, while having better alternatives. Soul Eater
: Can be useful in easy matchups and better snowballing, but not recommended.
: Don't take it, you are a tank, not
: Don't take it, towers are already melting with your
. Siphoning Strike
, : Not useful.
: Can give you an advantage in fights, but and are better.
For the page, all other runes in and not yet mentioned can be ignored, because they do not give you movement speed.
Pretty straight forward, level up
whenever you can, max Fury of the Sands first (even sneak in a second skill point before you level Siphoning Strike ), and after that Spirit Fire . Wither
Why W instead of E second?
You might wonder why you should level
last. Spirit Fire
The reason is that this spell is mainly used for reducing enemy armor, which becomes most useful in late game. Another use case for
is ranged farming, but you should avoid farming with it anyway due to its high mana cost (only use it for cannon minions which you are unable to stack). Spirit Fire
on the other hand is useful in all game stages, because it reduces enemy movment speed and attack speed, combined with you can even chase a Wither . Hecarim
Although movement speed is your most important stat apart from cooldown reduction, the
reduction aswell is an important reason you want to take Attack Speed second. It not only helps in 1v1 situations, especially against opponents like Wither or Irelia , but also in mid game fights against enemy ADCs, who have no chance against you this way. Even when the enemy support keeps you away from the ADC, the 95% movement speed reduction still make them an easy target for your team. Jax
Obviously, your most important spell is
, because it is your main damage output and you need to gain stacks fast. Look out for these powerspikes: Siphoning Strike
- 100 Stacks: Combined with sheen you can 1v1 most laners
- 300 Stacks: Start being active on the map (roam, kill enemy botlane, splitpush etc.)
- 600 Stacks: Win the game, you won't get any stronger
To keep track of your stacking performance, there is a rule of thumb: 20 stacks per minute (meaning 200 stacks at 10min, 400 stacks at 20min etc)
Depending on the game (and especially the visits from your enemy jungler), you might get lower than that early on, but that is not too important, because you will catch up on stacks pretty fast when you start getting strong.
For summoner spells, I would recommend 3 different sets. All of them include , because you really need the speed as
My recommendation depends on the chosen rune page.
is good for , because you gain extra mobility for the best overall experience.
is good for due to its low cooldown, defensive capabilities and baiting potential (nobody expects in a toplane 1v1).
is good for , because it improves your presence on the map and puts more pressure on your lane opponent.
Unlike many other things, summoner spells on
are mostly personal preference and can be swapped however you want. Nasus
are very flexible and should always be adapted to the game. In the following, I will show you different options and explain, when you should build what. If you don't care about the adaptation and just need a build, here you go: Nasus
For your mythic item, it is fair to say you should always buy , because it gives you a effect while also providing tank damage and further healing. The only other option for your would be , which is also fine due to its speed buffs, but lacks the penetration values and the healing and is therefore only useful in edge cases.
A more defensive alternative is not upgrading your and instead buying . This item gives you a lot of tankines and can be useful against squishy targets and assassins, but due to the lack of a alternative it should only be bought in games where the enemies do not have tanks and when you got bullied hard in the early game.
you rely heavily on you summoner spells for mobility and cooldown reduction for stacking. are great for both of these issues and should be the prefered choice in most of your games, but in a few cases other boots also have to be considered. Nasus
are great when the enemy team has 3 autoattack based champions (e.g.
, Irelia and Master Yi ). In this case you need the extra tankiness provided by these boots. Draven
can be useful against enemies with a lot of hard cc (e.g.
, Maokai and Sejuani ), but are not quite as useful on Nautilus as on other champions, because he already has lots of tenacity from and . Nasus
When you play against opponents who have a lot of lifesteal (e.g.
), you have to buy an early before you finish your mythic. In later game stages you will most likely need a anyway, because nowadays only few champions buy healing reduction due to its nerfs, but still gives good stats and applies the debuff to all enemies who attack you (especially useful in teamfights). Aatrox
For teamfighting, you might need to reach the carries faster. With this item you gain movement speed when getting attacked, meaning that you run faster when they try to stop you.
To combat your mana needs, mostly fixes this problem for you while also providing really good stats against AD champions. An alternative is and , but I personally do not like this item. Keep in mind that resistances are more useful on
than HP, because they utilize your lifesteal more efficently. Nasus
Bonus healing is always nice on
, so is a good choice when you don't know what elso to buy. It is certainly a pretty good item, even though is more useful on many occasions. Nasus
Other viable Items
: Faster is always better.
: Pretty good for teamfights.
: Good item, but you already have a lot of armor.
: If you decide to go full splitpush, take this item.
: If the enemy team has a lot of tanks, this item can help you.
: Gives you great fighting potential, but you waste quite a lot of AD.
: When you get damaged by only one specific opponent.
Stay patient in the early game, wait for your powerspikes adn hope that the enemy jungler does not camp you.
After you reach the mid game, decide whether you want to teamfight or splitpush this game and plan your item build. As a rule of thumb, teamfight when your team is equal or behind and spitpush when you can theoretically handle 2 enemies at once, while your team does not lose 4v4.
Your are a mixture between tank and bruiser, so try to tank skillshots for your team and engage the enemy carries when you can. A good timed
on the enemy ADC will make the fight a lot easier. Wither
In mid game, your lane opponent can most likely do nothing against you, so just run him down with and push the towers. Keep stacking while you push the waves to not waste any resources.
Most matchups follow the same pattern: You get slapped until the 100 Stack powerspike and then run them down afterwards.
That's why I will only talk about the most notable matchups: