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All Guides Nasus Guides We Will Q, They Will Die (edited 6.11)
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Updated
2 years ago
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Nasus Statistics for IASIP Golden God

Author's performance with Nasus compared to the ranked average.

Value
Average
Games Played
2
5
Win %
50
45
Kills
4.5
4.4
Assists
7.5
5.6
Deaths
6.5
5.4
KA:D Ratio
1.8
1.9
Gold Earned
15.4K
11.2K
Creep Score
242.5
182.6
Average
  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

I find 12.png essential to Nasus. If your opponent is very good, you will need to go to base quite often. 12.png gives you the ability to go back and not worry about missing farm. 12.png also gives you the ability to split push and farm while still being available in teamfights around baron late game. In my preference, I will take 6.pngwith 12.png as well. With the 6.10 buffs with Ghost, it heavily reduces the enemy's ability to kite you in teamfights. It also has a substantial smaller cooldown than 4.png. However, 4.png is a better escaping mechanism than 6.pngas it will allow you to go over certain terrain quickly. I also find 4.png as a better summoner spell to get away from many pulls and CC from your lane opponent. For example, it is easier to flash out of a 122_64.png pull than trying to pop ghost and outrun the pull. However, having 6.png on 75_64.png late game can be scary as it will reduce the enemies' ability to kite you before you lay down the cane on them. Generally, 4.png and 6.png comes down to preference, 6.png being more effective late game and 4.png more effective early game. Having both 6.png and 4.png is viable if you want to have double escape, but teleport allows you to do the things I mentioned above. 


New Runes Back to Top

Masteries Back to Top

This is a fairly standard mastery page for Nasus. It is quite defensive and safe. The insight mastery allows 75.png to have a shorter 12.png and/or4.png6.png cooldown, which is important. I also like the Bandit mastery as it allows you get some gold when you are getting harrassed under tower.


However, if you want to be more aggressive, use a 12/18/0 mastery page. That would include: sorcery, feast, vampirism, opressor in the ferocity branch and wanderer, secret stash, merciless, bandit, intelligence, and stormraider's on the cunning branch. It's a more greedy and aggressive mastery page, but it has a lot of upsides.

Abilities Back to Top

Q
W
E
Q
Q
R
Q
W
Q
W
R
W
W
E
E
R
E
E
Passive
Q
1
4
5
7
9
W
2
8
10
12
13
E
3
14
15
17
18
R
6
11
16

You want to start stacking your siphoning strike as soon as possible. I mean, after all, the whole purpose to play Nasus is to be able to one-shot the carries during the late game. Next, I generally max W next. Not only is it a good form of CC to chase down opponents, it also slows the attack speed, something that I see many Nasus forget in a duel or teamfight. Even if your opponent is not fleeing, use your W to slow their attack speed. Therefore, use your W on fleeing opponents and the ADC during teamfights as it will decrease their damage output. However, if you feel like you need some extra ranged harass, especially against AP top laners, put a couple more points at E, preferably at levels 8 and 10. The reason why I don't like to put a lot of points into my E early is that it can take farm away that could be used for Q for stacking. Also, putting putting points into your E will push the lane, something you want to avoid as a Nasus player. Finally, rank your ultimate whenever you can (level 6,11,16). Speaking of your ultimate, don't be afraid to use your ultimate frequently. Even though it has a large cooldown (2 minutes), it can be a great tool to win some early fights. It is also a good baiting tool for opponents to dive you if you are on low health. Since your ultimate grants health, you can bait them to dive you and survive if you pop your ult. Just make sure you have enough mana to do so. 


Tips:
  • Try to use your Q on cannon creeps as it will give you 6 stacks instead of 3
  • Your Q is an autoattack reset, meaning you should autoattack and then immediately use your Q when you are looking to trade with your opponents.
  • ONLY USE YOUR E AND W if your life is in danger or you can secure a kill. Having health and mana are the biggest factors to stay in lane. You can sustain with your passive so be judicious when you use your E and W. They cost a combined 150 mana at rank 1 which equates to around 8 Q stacks. Using mana for your Q is more important than harass.
  • Using your W during a duel can mean the difference between life and death. The attack speed slow from it can be crucial in a fight, especially against heavy autoattacking champions like 24_64.png and 23_64.png
  • When using your E, try to put your E in the path your opponent is taking so they have to travel through the E longer. Your E will do more damage the longer your opponent stays in it.
  • Don't be afraid to use your ultimate. Although it has a relatively long CD, you shouldn't want to fight that often, meaning it will probably be back for a teamfight or the next duel you have.

Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    Crystal for AP Cloth for AD Doran's an okay start
    Consumables
    MAKE SURE YOU DON'T RUN OUT OF THESE ITEMS
    First Back Items
    if you have an awkard amount of money

Core Items

    Core Defensive Items
    Choose One
    MOST OP VISION ITEM IN GAME

Situational Items

    Depending on the matchup: Poke Heavy team= veil, Lots of AP/Teemo shrooms= locket, Split-push Nasus: Warmog's, Heavy AA champions= thornmail Sunfire= meh You didn't buy Icebourne and enemies rely on AA speed= frozen heart
    IF you are feeling troll and brave
Starting Items: The safe build is starting with the 1074_32.png.  Start with this if you are uncomfortable or uncertain with the match-up. However, I prefer strating 1029.png first, especially if you manage to get queued against a huge lane bully (ie 126_64.png114_64.png122_64.png). Starting a 1029_32.png with 2003_32.pngs does well against their early harass and gives you extra sustain to stay in lane to farm. You start off with a 1028_32.png against AP champions as you can build it straight into a 3211_32.png and then into a 3065_32.png, a great item on Nasus as it increases his passive lifesteal. You can also start 1028_32.png since it can be built into a 1011_32.png.  In my opinion, start 1028_32.png if facing more harass in lane and 1029_32.png if you need more potions

First Backs Items: Generally, when I play Nasus I like to build some health and damage first. The 3057_32.png and either 3024.png/1011_32.png / 3211_32.png (cowl for AP matchup, belt/glacial shroud for AD matchup). The 3057_32.png makes last hiting much easier on Nasus as it will proc whenever you use your Q, dealing bonus damage on your siphoning strike. Also, the extra mana allows you to stack more without running out of mana. Next, you build the 1011_32.png into a 3143_32.png or the 3211_32.png into the 3065_32.png. This will give you necessary health to stay in lane. Last thing, I also see Nasus players rushing 3078_32.png early on. ONLY do this if you are snowballing hard (snowballing hard on Nasus is being up in cs, levels, and around 300 stacks by 10 minutes). I usually buy my offensive option after I build my first main defensive item and/or tier two boots. Buy 3111_32.png ONLY if you need the tenacity. If they have a lot of strong CC, pick 3111_32.png. Do not build this item strictly for MR. Otherwise 3047_32.png is a better, less expensive option. Consider buying 3110_32.png if you are really behind, unless your opponent deals true damage (ie 2_64.png ). Even though the price reduction is the same as 3143_32.png3110_32.png is very cheap now (2450 gold). I think if you and your team are slightly ahead/even, you can rush this item. The 20% CDR makes stacking your Q quick and fast. Another option is building 3024_32.png  to get some CDR and armor. However, you may run out of inventory if you get 3024_32.png,1011_32.png, and 3057_32.png with the appropriate amount of wards and potions.
EDIT:3363.png This item is the most OP vision item right now. It has a short cd and it has a long range. Constantly place these in the enemy jungle when you're splitting and farming.
EDIT: ONLY consider getting a 3057_32.png during your first backs if you are not under any pressure in lane. However, if you are being harassed or camped often, then you should buy more wards and defensive items.

Core Items/Situational Items: Unless the team is full AD, 3065_32.png is a good item as it enhances his passive lifesteal. Similarly, unless the team has four AP members, get the 3110_32.png as well. It gives you all of the stats I mentioned above. I just don't like this item to be rushed. 3075_32.png is a good item if they have either a fed ADC or two champions that heavily rely on autoattacking. 3742.png is the quintessential defensive armor item in this meta. 3143.png is only great against crit based champions like 157.png. Also, it wouldn't be a bad idea to get this item second or third after your 3143_32.png if you are facing a heavy autoattacking opponent (ie 23_64.png114_64.png266_64.png). However, I find 3110_32.png much better to pass up than 3075_32.png3083_32.png is an okay item. I only consider this item if they have some damage dealers that deal true damage (ie 11_64.png or 39_64.png). The reason why it's risky is that some champions deal damage based on max health so avoid this item if you are against a 67_64.png for example.  3102_32.png and 3190_32.png are some good extra magic resistance items. However, I prefer 3102_32.png as either your support or jungler should buy 3190_32.png if they have a full AP team. However, if they do not have it or you feel like everyone on your team needs extra magic resist, go for 3190_32.png3190_32.png is also a good item if the opposing team has a Teemo on the opposing team as it will protect everyone from shrooms.

EDIT: 3083_32.png is a more viable item now, especially if you feel like the only way to win is to split-push. The 3% health gained out of combat+ 3065_32.png will make you rapidly regen health quickly. Plus, it offers 10% CDR which is also nice.
EDIT: Ever since Sirhcez played Nasus with this item 3056_32.png, many players have started to use this item. In my opinion, you do not want to rush this item. If you are really poor, consider buying 3110_32.png over 3056_32.png. What makes this item special is the active to block turret shots. As 75_64.png, you should avoid tower-diving until you have tankier items. A good substitute, however, if they have a full AD team and can replace 3065_32.png. However, Sirhcez is a much better player than me so his advice weighs much more than mine. 
EDIT: DO NOT BUY 3110_32.png and 3075_32.png right after each other. You need health to back up all of the armor. A 3035_32.png will absolutely negate most of that armor. You can have both in a final build if they have a full AD composition.

Trinity Force 3078_64.pngvs. Iceborn Guantlet 3025_64.png: You need one damage item as 75_64.png. These items synergize with 75_64.png well because it gives him some pushing ability, a sheen proc on his Q, and a lot of CDR so you can stack you Q faster. However, only one of these items should be necessary for this build. Personally, choosing one depends on the how the game is playing out. If you are snowballing, I think 3078_32.png is the better item. It will give you better dueling potential. Also, build 3078_32.png if you think that split-pushing is the only way your team can win. This item will allow Nasus to destroy turrets quickly with the bonus AD and AS. I'll talk more about split-pushing later. However, if your team is slightly behind and needs some extra tankiness and team-fight presence, build 3025_32.png. The AOE slow can be devestating in teamfights. However, this will hinder your ability to stack your Q as the AOE damage will cause some creeps to die. The only reason why I dislike 3025.png is that it can affect stacking once you complete with its passive. However, it is really gold efficient.
NOTE: DO NOT BUILD 3025_32.png and 3110_32.png at the same time.
NEVER RUN OUT OF THESE ITEMS: 2044_32.png2043_32.png. These items wins you games. Whenever you go back, if you have the 75 gold, spend it on a ward. It could save your life when you are in lane. However, vision can only do so much if you don't look at your minimap.
3060_32.png
This may seem like a troll pick but there is some merit to this item on Nasus. Not only does it build out of 3105_32.png to help your team, but it offers cooldown reduction and ability power, statistics that benefit 75_64.png. Plus, the active is underlooked as it can help you split-push to victory. DO NOT RUSH THIS ITEM THOUGH. A decent sixth item.

Matchups Back to Top

Click on a champion below to see the author's notes on that particular matchup.

  • Aatrox
    Medium
  • Akali
    Medium
  • Azir
    Hard
  • Bard
    Hard
  • Cassiopeia
    Hard
  • Cho'Gath
    Medium
  • Darius
    Hard
  • Dr. Mundo
    Easy
  • Ekko
    Hard
  • Fiora
    Hard
  • Fizz
    Hard
  • Gangplank
    Medium
  • Garen
    Medium
  • Gnar
    Hard
  • Hecarim
    Easy
  • Heimerdinger
    Hard
  • Irelia
    Hard
  • Jarvan IV
    Medium
  • Jax
    Easy
  • Jayce
    Hard
  • Kayle
    Medium
  • Kennen
    Hard
  • Lee Sin
    Medium
  • Lissandra
    Hard
  • Malphite
    Medium
  • Maokai
    Medium
  • Morgana
    Medium
  • Nasus
    Easy
  • Nidalee
    Hard
  • Olaf
    Medium
  • Pantheon
    Medium
  • Quinn
    Hard
  • Renekton
    Easy
  • Riven
    Medium
  • Rumble
    Hard
  • Ryze
    Hard
  • Shen
    Easy
  • Shyvana
    Medium
  • Sion
    Medium
  • Teemo
    Hard
  • Tryndamere
    Medium
  • Yasuo
    Hard
  • Yorick
    Medium

VS

Aatrox

Medium

He can be quite a lane bully and his passive can be really annoying during early levels. However, 266_64.png is a very snowbally champion so if you don't give up unnecessary kills and run 12.png, you should be fine. He can also set up ganks really well with his knock-up and slow, so be cautious when he decides to go really aggressive. Consider 3075_32.png if you feel like he will be a damage threat throughout the game. Throw a wither.png on him when you engage in duels with him. 

VS

Akali

Medium

As long as you don't feed, 75_64.png should be able to destroy all assassins late game. Pre-6, you should be safe to farm. However, once she reaches six and has enough ultimate charges, expect 84_64.pngs to go aggressive. Try to freeze the lane and farm under turret. If you can get a gank, make sure you have a 2043_32.png or a 3341_32.png to counteract her shroud. Also, make sure you place an E right where she places her W so she takes some damage while she hides.


EDIT: the lane matchup should be slightly easier as her E does not proc her Q anymore. Therefore, she will have to auto you to get the bonus Q damage. 

VS

Azir

Hard

This champion is an enigma. He has the potential to carry the game, but requires such a high skillcap. You should be safe to farm early in the game. Avoiding his Q will limit his damage output as his soldier's basic attacks were reduced. Finally, try to bait his E as he will have no escapes after that.


EDIT:
After playing the matchup on both sides, the matchup is rated as hard. his poke is ridiculous, especially after they fixed a lot of bugs with him. Although I do not recommend getting a lot of ganks, this might not be the case since it will be ridiculous to get farm if not left alone. He is very squishy so a decent gank should result in a kill

VS

Bard

Hard

Let's be real, everyone loses to Bard 432_64.png

VS

Cassiopeia

Hard

She has been played more often now with the recent changes to her. In my opinion, she is a slightly less annoying 268_64.png. Although her poke may be more hazardous than Azir's, she has less mobility than him. You should be able to bully her once you reach around 150 stacks. Don't let Cass top tilt you harder than TSM

VS

Cho'Gath

Medium

This guy can be quite annoying. He has a lot of CC and builds super tanky which can be quite troublesome. Luckily, most of his spells are skill shots, so dodging is essential to surviving the lane. He also has great sustain in lane so forcing him out of lane will be quite hard. Just be wary of his feast.png... it deals true damage. Buying early boots wouldn't be terrible since most of his damage will come from his rupture.png. I find that 3111.png are an absolute must buy against him.

VS

Darius

Hard
With the rework of Darius, I believe he is the worst champion 75.png can face. Everything 122.png does causes pain for you. Avoiding his dariuscleave.png, however, will make the difference between life and death for you. In a close encouter, do not allow him to the outside part of his dariuscleave.png. Not only will it heal him, but it will damage you more and put his passive stacks on you. Dodging the outside of his dariuscleave.png will make the overall difference. Also, godofdeath.png before he dariusexecute.png you.

VS

Dr. Mundo

Easy

One of the few match-ups that will favor Nasus. If the opposing team for some reason picks this champion before you do and goes top lane, pick Nasus immediately. 36_64.png is a late game scaling tank. However, although he does some early damage, he will have little kill potential on you throughout the entire game unless he gets help. Even then, if he snowballs, he will just get tankier. Dodge his infectedcleavermissilecast.png and you should be able to farm easily. Buy an early 3065_32.png to increase your passive sustain and deal with his cleavers.

VS

Ekko

Hard
Right now, he just embodies the average, ranged vs melee matchup. He can spam his ekkoQ.png, but just avoid the second part of it and it shouldn't be too bad. 245.png likes to go into a bush and throw a ekkoW.png on you to get the stun. Whenever, he gets in the bush, be cautious of that. 

VS

Fiora

Hard
With her new rework, I find her just as annoying as 122.png. She can proc her vitals so easily with her fioraq.png. She can do it with such ease as well even when you're under turret. Her fiorariposte.png can only block your siphoningstrikenew.png if 114.png times it right. And now, you can't even 3140.png her fioradance.png which her even more problematic as before. However, you can still outplay her fioradance.png. Have one of her unprocced vitals hug the wall so she can't proc it and get the healing buff if she procs it. That's about much counterplay you can get with her ult.

VS

Fizz

Hard

This champion is really annoying. His W + 3153_32.png passive is ridiculously strong right now. Use your W when he engages on you, but you should be fine. Also, dodging his shark will drastically reduce his damage output.

EDIT: As of patch 5.7, I don't think we will see anymore AD 105_64.png

VS

Gangplank

Medium

EDIT: all of the previous information I had on this champion was obsolete since his new rework.


Holy hell does his raisemorale.png hurt. However, I have not faced against a really good 41.png so you shouldn't be hit with those too often. Regardless, your wither.png is pretty ineffective against him as he can removescurvy.png it right off. And he isn't too big of a lane bully unless he is a god with his raisemorale.png as he just wants to farm up to items like you. He still builds a lot of crit so 3143.png is essential to survive.

VS

Garen

Medium

This champion is so annoying. Just don't feed him kills as his early game damage is too much. Whenever he uses his garenslash3.png towards you, use your wither.png immediately to slow him down. Just keep farming and stack your siphoningstrikenew.png. Later on in the game, 86_64.png should be built mostly tank but you will have the upper hand in damage. Do not focus him teamfights. Consider him a slightly useful and more annoying Mundo. Whenever you are low though, just return back or lifesteal quickly as his garenjustice.png will deal stupid damage to you the lower you are.

VS

Gnar

Hard

I put this match-up at a medium rating because most 150_64.pngs I have seen have been quite bad. However, 150_64.png has the potential to be a complete nightmare for Nasus. For the early game, just try to dodge his poke from his Qs and AAs. Plus, continually watch his rage bar. When it gets close to full, try to disengage quickly so he can't use his large amounts of CC. When you have enough stacks (around 150-200), you can start trading with him. Engage right after he transforms back as he loses the bonus health, armor, and magic resist. As for teamfights, watch 150_64.png's rage bar. Do not start a teamfight if he is about to go to Mega 150_64.png as he will wombo-combo your whole team with CC. Similar to lane, engage once he has switched right back to mini-150_64.png.

EDIT: He is rated as a hard matchup as those who can somewhat manage his rage play him. His poke did get reduced quite a bit in the earlier stages which should help. However, he is still a menace and definitely get 6.png over flash to diminish his kiting abilities. Avoiding his gnarQ.png is definitely important to kill him. When he turns Mega though later one, you should bully him.

VS

Hecarim

Easy
120_64.png has become the new top of the month after EP AmazingJ rocked this champion with the 12.png14.png (pretty sure he was the first to play him competitively this season). However, Nasus should do fine and possibly beat him. He is heavily predicated on pressuring the opponent, pushing the wave, and gank other lanes. However, you can negate all of his biggest pros easily. Your W will easily reduce his damage output as the slow impacts his passive bonus AD. Having your opponent push the wave goes in your favor as you can get uncontested minions. Just warn your teammates when you don't see him as the 3270_32.png12.png ganks can be devastating

VS

Heimerdinger

Hard

No one can beat the Donger 74.png in lane, let's be honest. If you do have the misfortune to lane against a Donger, you just have to avoid his h28gevolutionturret.png mega beam. His h28gevolutionturret.png does offer stacks for you so I guess that's one benefit of laning against him.

VS

Irelia

Hard
39_64.png can be quite problematic. My general rule of thumb against 39_64.pngs is to not die as she will snowball the advantage just as hard as 92_64.png or 24_64.png. Rush 3110_32.png39_64.png can scale well into late game, but you can scale even harder, especially if you built better defensive items.

VS

Jarvan IV

Medium

I haven't played this matchup yet, but I would assume it would be pretty standard. Dodging his jarvanivdemacianstandard.png-jarvanivdragonstrike.png combo is the key to the lane matchup. Also, most 59_64.pngs would rush 3077_32.png so the wave should perpetually push to you. Be cautious of ganks as he can set those up really well.

VS

Jax

Easy

Only reason why I put this matchup on easy level is because I have rarely seen any good 24_64.png players. In the early game, he shouldn't have immense kill potential on you, especially if you play safe. Whenever you see him charge up his jaxcounterstrike.png, try to disengage as quickly as possible. If he does try to fight you, immediately put your wither.png on him as the attack speed slow will cripple his damage output. Late game, even though 24_64.png is a beast, you will be a bigger beast if you have enough stacks.

EDIT: with all of the incremental buffs and the resurrection of 3124.png, he has become more obnoxious. However, if you do not die to him early, you should be fine.

VS

Jayce

Hard

Generally, all 126_64.pngs will build like an ADC. Just keep farming and stay away from his poke. Stand farther back away from minions when he tries to accelerate his Q. Dodging his shockblasts will negate a lot of his damage. He can get quite annoying mid game as well. Even though you will have enough stacks to duel him, he can kite you with range and knock you back with his E. He will win the early game, but you will be able to out damage him late. Also, try avoid sieging against a 126_64.png as his ranged poke can be devastating. 

VS

Kayle

Medium

This champion will always be annoying to most laners as her kit is very versatile. 10_64.png has a slow, a heal/movement speed boost, ranged poke, and an insane ultimate. However, though she can be annoying, she is definitely beatable. Just keep farming and get enough stacks. Most 10_64.pngs will not build tanky so once reach enough stacks, you can immediately dominate the lane. However, be cautious of diving her as she can always pop her ultimate, negating all of your damage. Another tip, you can still use your W on a target even if they have 10_64.png ultimate. The ultimate blocks all damage, not CC.

VS

Kennen

Hard

IMO, hes the spawn of 17_64.png and 150_64.png. He has ranged autoattacks, CC, and a good escape. Just farm what you can and rush 3111_32.png. Avoiding his shurikens should reduce his damage output. There are better options to face Kennen with.

VS

Lee Sin

Medium

Once 64_64.png gets a 1053_32.png, it will be hard to get him out of lane since he will have sustain for days. How this matchup plays out depends on what he builds. If he starts building damage items like 3074_32.png or 3035_32.png , then just farm as much as you can without feeding. 64_64.png has an insane amount of early game damage. Do not give him an even bigger advantage during your weakest point. Sooner or later, you will be out damage him and survive his damage. However, if he builds items like 3143_32.png or 3068_32.png, you should be fine in lane. His damage will still hurt if he manages to land a full combo, but he will do less damage once you get your 3143_32.png.

VS

Lissandra

Hard
127_64.png is very annoying as a champion, especially in top lane. She has a slow, snare, stun, and an escape. Her low range might be bad in mid lane, but in top lane, she is a bully. The one thing that goes in Susan's favor is that she will push the waves more often than not with her Q. This should allow you to get minions under your turret. Just be cautious as she can set up ganks really easy as stated above. 3111_32.png should be the boot choice.

VS

Malphite

Medium

This usually depends on what the 54_64.png is building. He can go AP malphite, tanky malphite, or AD malphite. Regardless of what he does, think of him as a 57_64.png with less CC but more poke. If he does go tanky 54_64.png, it is a farm lane and you should be able to farm easily. Try to take down his shield by occasionally throwing an E under his feet so when you trade with him, his shield won't completely negate the damage. Regardless of what build he goes, watch out for his ultimate as it can be devastating in teamfights and ganks.

VS

Maokai

Medium
57_64.png lives for teamfight engages. He does not, however, live for duels. Laning should be simple and easy as he will have very little kill potential on you pre-6. Although his saplings and Q do a bit of damage, your passive should allow you to heal you up. Speaking of passives, he has a similar passive as well so forcing him out of lane is quite unlikely. Focus on farming more than killing him. However, he does have great kill potential with jungler help as he has a root, a slow, and a knockback. Ward freqeuntly to make sure there are no surprises. Also, if the opposing team do pick 57_64.png before you choose a lane, you can pick 75_64.png with confidence and split-push to victory.

VS

Morgana

Medium

She is also the new flavor of the month for all solo laners. Although her poke is annoying, she does naturally push the wave which you can use to your advantage. Dodging her bindings will help you stay even in the lane. Just be cautious and warn your teammates when she is out of your sight.

VS

Nasus

Easy

Whoever can farm more will win this matchup.

VS

Nidalee

Hard

Depends on what 76_64.png build she goes as. If she goes an AD bruiser build, this lane can be quite difficult. Her ranged AA and poke can be quite difficult to handle, especially at early levels. Dodging her spears and traps will limit her damage output greatly though. If she goes AP build, then you should win the lane. Dodging her spears is practically all you have to do when she goes AP. Plus, if she goes full AP, she will have very few defensive stats, allowing you to two shot her with enough stacks.


edit: I don't know how Nidalees are supposed to be played and built right now. However, I will say that dodging her spears and avoiding her traps will help you win the game. Sooner or later, you will be able to outduel her.

VS

Olaf

Medium

I haven't seen many 2_64.png players in a while. However, I can imagine he can be quite problematic for Nasus in the early game. Try to avoid his Q at early levels to limit his damage output. Also, consider buying a 3083_32.png over a 3110_32.png as his E will do true damage, ignoring your armor. 

VS

Pantheon

Medium

His early game damage output and poke is ridiculous. However, he does run out of mana quickly at early levels. Whenever he is oom, you are free to farm without little retaliation. However, when you are low on health, go to base immediately as his E's passive will allow his Q and AA to crit every time. Also, whenever he has his passive shield up, make sure you AA and then use your Q on him. His shield will block your Q so make sure you take it down before you siphoning strike him. Just survive early game and absolutely demolish him late game.

VS

Quinn

Hard

If any champion would make me ff at the beginning as a 75.png player, 133.png would be that champion. First of all, many people are familiar with Teemo and his skillset to mess with Nasus. Quinn, however, requires a player that is practically a main of Quinn to play. And that is the most scary part about her. Not only is her quinnE.png-AA-quinnQ.png combo devasting, but Quinn players are most likely Quinn mains. Just pray to God that your opponent Quinn does not know how to play her and survive.

VS

Renekton

Easy

In the lore, 75_64.png and 58_64.png are brothers. This matchup works up in a similar way except that 75_64.png is the little brother. However, similar if you have an older brother, you will soon realize that you will be better than him later on when you get older. This matchup works the same way. Though 58_64.png is a lane bully, he is not the lane bully he once was. If you do not die before lvl 11 and are you are about even in levels and cs, you have won the lane. 58_64.png's game is built around snowballing early on and if you deny him when he is at his strongest, you will soon be able to out-damage him. Focus on csing and punish him if he builds damage items instead of tank items when you have enough stacks. Watch his fury bar as well as he will most likely go aggressive when he can empower his abilities. When it is half full, disengage so then he uses his fury on minions rather than yourself.

VS

Riven

Medium

Another skill matchup. However, in my experience in low elo, this should go relatively fine if you play safe, unless you get matched up with BoxBox's smurf account. 92_64.png will push the wave, which can allow you to freeze the lane if you want. However, try to avoid staying in lane if you are low in health as she can all in you with relative ease. Definitely start with 1029_32.png. However, if you do not allow her to snowball out of control, you should be fine when late game arrives. Although ganking her can set her behind, she can be difficult to gank with her skills. Just try to stay even in cs with her.

VS

Rumble

Hard

This is a skill matchup as this matchup will depend on the 68_64.png player skill level. However, if the opposing team manages to choose 68_64.png first in a ranked match, you should avoid picking 75_64.png as he might be skilled enough to manage his heat and such. However, if you do manage to get this matchup, it could get rough for you in the beginning. The few times I was faced with this matchup, I got zoned pretty hard from cs and exp. Honestly, just try to farm what you can without taking too much harass and try to punish him if he gets too over-aggressive and tries to dive you with jungler help. 

VS

Ryze

Hard

This champion is so broken imo as a top laner. He is very similar to Nasus as he is a late game scaling monster that also builds tanky as well. However, since he is a ranged mage with no skillshots, he has a much easier laning phase than Nasus. A good 13_64.png should be able to deny and zone you from experience and farm. Just try to farm under tower. Although I don't like many jungler ganks (I'll explain later), having jungler help would be good as he has no escapes and can be quite easy to kill early on. However, when you reach around 150 stacks and he is still completing his 3027_32.png or 3007_32.png, you can easily punish him as he will have very little resistances.

VS

Shen

Easy

Another typical farm lane. However, 98.png is a bit more unique in the sense that he can set up ganks much better with his shenshadowdash.png compared to 14.png or 36.png. Just be cautious of the enemy jungler. And although you cannot stop him from channelling his ult besides killing him, putting a wither.png on him before he shenstandunited.png can be helpful as it can slow him down from helping his teammates.

VS

Shyvana

Medium

She has fallen out of favor in the middle of season four for more AP top laners. However, she can still be quite good under the right hands. This may be a good time to actually play aggressively as she will have no innate sustain. Generally, all 102_64.pngs will start with a 1054_32.png and have no lifesteal. Although you will most likely lose trades, you can heal back up with your passive. However, do not blindly try to duel her as she can deal massive burst damage early on. Just keep farming and you should win late game.

VS

Sion

Medium

This matchup goes pretty much the same as the 36_64.png matchup, except more annoying. He will naturally run tanky items so the prospect of him snowballing isn't that frightening. However, his poke from his enrage.png and deathscaressfull.png can be quite problematic in the early game. Just farm what you can and avoid his enrage.png poke. Otherwise, you should be fine.

VS

Teemo

Hard

The epitomy of the devil. Honestly, look at his face17_64.png. Honestly, a good Teemo will make a Nasus' life hell. His blind will disrupt your stacking. Plus, he is a ranged champion that can harass early. Build 3065_32.png and 3111_32.png to reduce the blind and try to farm as much as you can. Also consider buying 3364_32.png for all of the shrooms he will plant. However, if you can farm nicely, and you don't feed, the matchup will quickly go to Nasus' favor as he will have enough stacks to two shot Teemo.

VS

Tryndamere

Medium

He can be quite a nuisance, especially with his undyingrage.png. He will passively push the wave towards you as he will try to build fury with autoattacks, which is a good thing for you. If you can freeze the lane, that should be able to halt his early game aggression. Whenever he does try to all in you, use your wither.png to slow his attack speed. Late game, you could surprise him by instantly bursting him down if you a have a huge Q, preventing him to use his ult. Consider buying 3078_32.png over 3025_32.png as most 23_64.png players will just split-push every chance they get. This might be the rare case that you could take 6.png4.pngover 12.png since 23_64.png will just splitpush all day. The extra escapes could be useful for chasing or escaping in the early game.

VS

Yasuo

Hard
157.png has slowly become more and more viable as a top laner than mid laner. Although I have never faced him as 75.png, I can only assume he poses a similar challenge to 24.png but harder. He can yasuoE.png between minions and his AA-yasuoQ.png combos are quite annoying. His yasuoW.png is useless against you and your wither.png is quite effective on him. 3110.png and 3143.png are absolute must have items against him to shut him down. He is also quite vulnerable to ganks so once you have enough stacks, put a wither.png and get plus six from siphoningstrikenew.png.

VS

Yorick

Medium

I have seen only 1 Yorick player in my 130 ranked games in Season 4. This champion is practically a legendary pokemon. Just do what you would normally do against any legendary pokemon by whittling down when you have enough stacks and try to catch it. However, instead of throwing a pokeball at it, put a huge Q to his face. Also, you can stack your Q on his ghouls so free gold and stacks for you.

Why Pick Nasus Back to Top

As you can tell from the match-list, there are very few matchups that favor 75_64.png. In fact, almost every top-laner in the current meta has some advantage on him, especially during the laning phase. So, why choose a champion that struggles to survive the early game? Here are some reasons why:

  1. He is such a late game beast: During most of my games as 75_64.png I can get around 500 stacks on my Q by thirty minutes. Think about that. You will be doing around 700 damage per Q on almost every champion unless they stacks a lot of amount of armor. Plus, if you built a 3078_32.png, you could have around an 1100 Q  strike with the critical strike chance. Talk about literally one-shotting the carries.
  2. He creates pressure: 75_64.png getting big is an inevitable event that will happen. Sooner or later he will do an insane amount of damage. His inevitable late game will diverge a lot of attention from the enemy to shut him down early. Many times I have played 75_64.png, the enemy jungler has attempted to gank and kill me, delaying my ability to farm and gain experience. However, with proper ward coverage, I was able to survive and wasting time for my opponents. Also, if they do manage to successively kill me a couple times, my team was able to accomplish some important objectives like towers, dragons, and buffs.
  3. If you like playing passively in lane, 75_64.png is the ideal champion: Ideally, you want to be farming constantly for the first twenty minutes. Of course, many things can occur such as jungle invades, ganks from both teams, crucial dragon fights, or an opportunity to gank bot lane via 12.png. Regardless of the situation, 75_64.png' early and mid game is predicated on farming and stacking your Q. 
  4. Learning more about the game: It seems counterintuitive that a champion with such a simple set of instructions will teach me more about League of Legends. However, 75_64.png has taught more about this game. For example, he has taught me to have a flexible building path depending on the lane matchup and enemy composition. 75_64.png also taught me the importance of trading and freezing, things I will address later in the build.
  5. There is something satisfying about owning late game: Every single game I play 75_64.png, I look forward to the moment when I can outduel the top laner that was making my life hell for the first 15 minutes of the game. There is something about gaining so much power over times that makes me enjoy this champion.
  6. Don't you want to pull off one of the greatest backdoors in professional LoL history: Zionspartan Nasus Backdoor. This video practically shows the full power of Nasus late game. 

Nasus Tips Back to Top

  1. Learn how to last hit, especially under tower: If you can't last hit minions, you shouldn't play Nasus as at all. All of his power derives from him stacking his Q. Also, you will most likely be bullied to your tower when you play him so last-hitting under tower is essential. Remember that you can Q the melee minion with two tower hits and then a Q. Caster minions go down with one tower hit, one AA, and one Q at full HP.
  2. Trading: I somewhat explained in the abilities section, but use your mana strictly for stacking. Using E and W can drain your mana pool which can hurt your ability to stay in lane. Use these abilities if your life is in danger or you can secure a kill. You can't outtrade your opponent until you reach around 150 stacks so try to get to that point instead.
  3. Learn abut freezing the lane towards your tower: Freezing the lane makes the laning phase of 75_64.png and every passive laner so much easier. Freezing the lane means that the minion wave is closer to your tower however far enough so that the tower does not hit the minions. Therefore, you can farm near your tower whereas your opponent must go far away from their tower to farm. Freezing minimizes the early game struggles of Nasus as he can farm safely and with little concern for jungler ganks. If the jungler decides to gank you, they will have to dive you and take tower shots, something that is hard to coordinate at even professional levels. I uploaded a link that better describe what a freeze is and how to set it up. How to Freeze the Lane. Freezing the lane does not apply to 75_64.png alone but to every champion and you can abuse this method in every game you play.
  4. Aggressiveness in lane: Throughout this build, I talk about being passive and focusing on farming. However, that does not mean capitalizing on the mistakes of your opponents. One of the biggest problems I see from my opponents when I play 75_64.png is that they want to be too aggressive, especially during levels 1-3. Your opponents want to harass you too much, but they end up losing the trade since they pull minion aggro. Although they are minions, they can do some serious damage in the early levels. If you see your opponent take minion aggro, throw a W on them and try to get as much minion aggro on them early. If you can do this, you can waste your opponent's potions and potentially get an early kill on them with jungler help. 
  5. Split-push or team fight: 75_64.png is a great champion that can help in both situations very effectively. His Q will take down turrets quick and he has great diving potential with his ultimate and peeling potential with his slow. However, deciding what to do what is important to his gameplay. Every game takes on a different scenario so there will be no clear cut way to attack this problem. However, my general rule of thumb is that you split-push if your team has a low teamfight potential (no hard initiation, no tanks/front line besides you) and/or your team is behind. Split-pushing gives your team time as the enemy will have to decide whether to stop you or stop your team. However, when you split-push, make sure your team is pressuring another objective. If you randomly push bot lane while your team is in base, you are giving the enemy a free kill for nothing. Communicate first, than act. Split-pushing can also be a good way to go forward if you are ahead as well. However, if you have enough elements of a good teamfight (hard initiation, some disengage/peeling potential, good AOE damage) in your comp, then you should just teamfight instead to prevent throws and finish sooner.
  6. Teleport Usage: Mid-game teleport usage can effectively change the momentum of the game into your favor. However, 75_64.png is not a position where he can help mid-game unless he is snowballing very well. In my experiences, I find myself not using 12.png as much as I should have. My better teleport usages have been as a prevention mechanism. For example, I see bot lane being ganked by the mid laner and jungler. I 12.png to the botlane tower in hopes to dissuade them from diving them. Usually, they will fall back and I am able to cancel my teleport in time. In my opinion, this is the best way to use your teleport as 75_64.png. You really need stacks to be effective throghout the game. Therefore, using your teleport as a bait is probably the best way to help your team through the mid-game. But if you feel like your team is in a position to turn a fight in your favor when you tp in, then you should commit to it fully. 

General Playing Advice Back to Top

This is advice that every player should use in every game. Even though I am a low elo player, I feel my advice should have great weight as I have seen the positive impacts first-hand of the advice I am about to give.

  1. ALWAYS WARD: warding is essential for all players. If you have someone on your team that has the audacity to say that it is not their job to ward, you might as well quit game because that is the level of stupidity that will keep you in "elo hell." Warding is power. Not only does it tell you where your enemies are, it most importantly tells you where your opponents aren't. At the very least, use your pink ward. The pink ward does not expire until it gets destroyed and it is only worth 100 gold. Think from the standpoint of 75_64.png. Suppose you ward the tribush and river of top lane with a regular ward and trinket and you see the enemy jungler approach the lane. You stay safe and possibly try to bait as much time from the jungler while your team gets a successful gank off bot and take an early game dragon. Now, you just refunded the 75 gold with a dragon, a tangible net profit. Not only did you get gold, but you also denied your opponents from getting that gold as well and wasted time from the opposing team trying to set up a gank. That's a small lead that can translate into a victory. 
  2. DO NOT DIE: If someone asks me how to get to higher ranks, warding and not dying would be my two biggest tips to give. Think about it, what can you do when you are dead? You can only buy items, scroll the map, and ping. When you are alive and in a lane, you are gaining gold and experience no matter what. Also, you not dying denies your opponents the gold and experience when they kill you. Now, the best ways to help you not die is to let cs go, backing when it is appropriate, and playing safely if your opponent is fed/more skilled. 
  • Letting CS go: This advice really applies to all matchups, specifically ranged vs melee. When I was first starting  to play Nasus or even melee assasins like Zed and Talon, my biggest problem was that I was getting chunked when I was csing. I would walk into range of a ranged champion or a melee champion that was stronger at that point and would lose hp for that cs. To coutneract this, you need to let some cs go. Many laners are very impatient and will try to push the wave regardless. Let them push so you can last hit near the safety of your turret. That's why I stress last hitting is essential on all champions. It is crucial to get almost every free minion, especially if you don't go for the risky cs.
  • Backing: This one requires common sense. If you want to back, either back under turret or an unwarded area. Many times I have seen players back in danger and getting killed unexpectedly. When to back is another issue as well. If you are below 500 health, you should probably back immediately. If you are in lane at that low health, you are just asking the jungler to come and gank you. Unless you have vision of everyone on the screen, don't take an unneccessary risk.
  • Playing Safe: There is no shame in admitting that other players are more skilled than you. If you are getting your ass handed to in a lane either by a counter matchup or skill, just try to farm and not feed. If you think about it, an underfarmed champion is probably going to be easier to work as a team with than an overfed enemy. Let me put it this way. You can always gain cs and kills. You can't take away kill/assist gold and experience.
  1. Do not follow the same build every game: I kinda talked about this regarding 75_64.png, but this can applied to every role and champion, especially ADCs. It seems that I see every ADC build exactly the same items over and over again without any thought, as if they are programmed like robots to follow a certain build or professional. Every build should change  as the matchups, team compositions, and gameplay changes. Build also applies to summoner spells as well. Many times I have seen a mage like Lux take ignite against a Zed. Unless the player is the best Lux ever (and let's be real, if he is in the bronze-gold division, it is highly unlikely), exhaust or heal would be better options in surviving the lane. Don't be afraid to take more defensive summoner spells, especially if you are a mid laner. 
  2. Dragon calls: I'll explain this situation from the perspective of 75_64.png and I already explained this a bit beforehand. When I play 75_64.png, I do not like to get a lot of ganks early. Unless it is optimally set up for the jungler to gank my lane (pushed to my tower, no flash/escape, jungler has hard CC, in jungler route), I would prefer to have zero ganks and farm my Q. The reason is that I cannot snowball that advantage quickly into early success. Although a successful gank will give me free farm, I am not the lane bully now since I had free time. In fact, if your opponent played correctly (besides dying of course), the free farm allowed you to close the gap between cs as he should have the cs advantage throughout the laning phase. Plus, I have confidence in my abilities to cs and farm in a contested lane. I would much rather have my jungler hone his focus on the rest of the map, controlling dragons and help snowball other lanes, preferably bot lane as more global gold means more items for 75_64.png. And whenever you see the enemy jungler top, ping your team to start a dragon and/or pressure an objective 
  3. Baron vs. tower/inhibitor calls: This is why, imo, games last so long and games are thrown in the low elos of bronze, silver, and gold. It seems that everyone is afraid to do the baron unless the opposing team is aced and/or everyone is level eighteen. Honestly, if you have a good team composition with tankiness and damage, you can take a baron at levels 12-14 relative easy. Curse takes early Baron (early Baron clip starts around 30 minute mark). And I have two theories as to why people do not like to take Baron over towers in general. First of all, a downed inhibitor shows a tangible result. You have super minions pushing that lane so you can focus on the other inhibitors. However, the Baron buff does not show immediate, tangible results as it can be immediately be taken away if you die. If you get caught out of position (and let's be honest, a lot of people are out of position in lower elos), then that baron buff was essentially wasted. Second point, people see Baron as an objective that needs to be taken down by five members. However, in regard to the clip I linked, you can essentially have 3-4 four members at around lvl 14 to take an easy Baron. Although it will be easy to take down with all members at high levels, it is not impossible to do it at earlier times throughout the game. My general rule of thumb is that if you have to go back and clear minion waves to have your minions push down a turret/inhibitor after winning a teamfight, then you should go for baron instead. Just make sure once you secure the baron buff, you group up and have a coordinated plan. Do not throw away this buff.
  4. Playing to your champion's strengths: What I mean I mean by this is that you should play aggressively or passively depending on the champion you are playing. This is partly like I like 75_64.png. Unless you have the worst early game ever imaginable or the rest of your team loses before you can get big, 75_64.png will still be relevant late game. Some early game champions, however, do not have that luxury if they die a couple times. One of my best examples is the classic bot lane of 51_64.png vs. 67_64.png. Unless the 67_64.png has a more superior support than the 51_64.png's, that 51_64.png should win the lane all of the time because of her early game crits, range, and poke. But how many times have you seen the 51_64.png stay even with the 67_64.png in cs and kills? Despite if we win that game or not, that 51_64.png had a bad early game. She must dominate the early game because her main strengths are very effective in the early game, especially against a 67_64.png.
  5. Snowballing: Snowballing does not always entail getting kills. In fact, focusing too much on getting kills can actually be detrimental if you want to snowball. The reason why you focus on getting kills is not to kill your opponent and get the gold, but it is also deny your opponent experience and farm. However, if you have duel that leaves you to the point where you have to recall, the trade wasn't worth as much as it could have. Being up by 30 cs and one level with even kills at 10 minutes is just as good as getting two kills up only 5 cs at the same time. (Think about the math: (1cs=20 gold, 30 cs= 600 gold up; 1kill=300 gold, 2kills=600 gold up). That is why freezing can applied to every champion. If you are ahead and deny cs instead of killing the opponent, you are denying experience and gold. Plus, your opponent's gold depreciates if you kill him more and more times.
  6. When you are behind...: Another big problem in lower elo games is the acts of desperation when behind. it seems that once a team is behind, they themselves snowball the game out of control rather than the other team utilize their advantage. Whenever your team is behind, it is smart to group up. However, that does NOT mean engaging into extended teamfights. Since they have the advantage, they will be stronger in a straight up 5 v 5. Therefore, you have to set up picks, particularly in your own jungle. Set up wards and focusing on farming are the best ways to get back into the game. If a member on your team is particularly fed, hopefully a mid or adc, then funnel them the most farm as they will have the best chance to carry you to victory. Let the opposing team forcefully beat you instead of desperately trying to get back into the game.
  7. When it is time to stop: When you start getting mad at the game, perhaps this is the time to quit. The worst thing to do when you are losing is to get upset and keep losing. That is how people get demoted when they insist they want to break their losing streak. Whenever the game gets overwhelming for me, the best thing to do is to quit after the game and take a break. As a college student, doing homework is a bit of a stress reliever as it gets me out of the game and focus on other things as well.
  8. Have fun, it is just a game: this relates back to the previous point, but after all, League is just a game. Unless you are high elo player that is aspring to become a professional player (then I have to wonder why are you looking at my guides), League should be nothing more than a hobby. It is a video game that is designed to have fun. If losing or someone on your team is not making the game enjoyable, then maybe it is time to quit League for a couple days and recharge. 

Update Log Back to Top

  • 10/16/2014: started guide
  • 10/18/2014: guide went public
  • 11/04/2014: edited typos and added some details
  • 11/17/2014: edited some of the champion match-ups
  • 11/26/2014: edited the items section as the armor changes can alter build paths
  • 12/4/2014: added the legendary item 3056_32.png to the build as a SITUATIONAL item
  • 1/28/2015: edited some of the champion matchups and item builds with the upcoming patches.
  • 2/20/2015: MORE THAN 2000 views. Thank you guys very much. Whether you are looking to play some Nasus, wondering how you could improve your game, or just scrolling through the internet, I genuinely appreciate the views and likes. Glad my guide could help. Also, I am contemplating whether or not you guys would like to have a part in my guide where I discuss some of the good solo queue champions to play or not. I know this is farfetched, especially since other sites do this sort of thing, but I'm willing to do some extra stuff if you guys want my advice. Leave a comment if you want other pages or sections to be added in the guide.
  • 3/7/2014: added more matchups with the everchanging meta.
  • 3/12/2014: added more matchups 
  • 12/3/2015: wow, been a long time since I last edited this guide. Added some new matchups, information, and items to this.

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