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All Guides Nidalee Guides **SEASON 8** FREELO AP NIDALEE GUIDE. (Jungle, Mid)
197
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Updated
6 months ago
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Nidalee Statistics for Railerik

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

Value
Average
Games Played
213
5
Win %
56
36
Kills
8.5
5.7
Assists
7.4
7.1
Deaths
6.2
6.8
KA:D Ratio
2.6
1.9
Gold Earned
12.1K
10.9K
Creep Score
52.3
71.8
Average
  • Author Champion Statistics
  • Guide Details

Summoner Spells Back to Top

When jungling, of course grab Smite.

Otherwise if you're mid/top Nidalee, you can take any of  the other summoners. Nidalee is quite versatile in that sense. 

I'm a big fan of ignite for mid because you can cheese some all-in level 2 kills against a few champions.


In order to play her well Mid, you need to already have a deep understanding of the champion and the match-ups. Note that you'll mostly play from behind during the lanning phase, and try to just be better mid-late with your poke and roam.
I sometimes use exhaust when I play vs high burst potential champions such as 238_64.png 7_64.png134_64.png55_64.png to have a safer laning phase. 

Barrier is even used by some Nidalee players I know who rock it. Personally not a big fan, again against Zed or some other burst type of assassins.

New Runes Back to Top

The new runes really aren't so bad for Nidalee. The new TLD (now called Electrocute) offers a really nice burst of damage both for the jungle and the middle lane.


You can surprise enemies with some good burst early game, and this can allow you to be agressive when invading the enemy jungler.

Also, Triumph is basically OP as hell so you'll want to grab that too.

In a team-fight, if you get 1-2 assists or kills, you'll give yourself a huge chance of staying high on HP.

Also, this Rune has allowed me to get away with a LOT of 2v1s. You kill the first person, get a burst of HP back and finally get to kill the other person too.

I don't really see any other way of playing Nidalee than this.

I've seen some with Dark Harvest, and it isn't that bad, but I don't really know if it's worth it because of how reliable your Electrocute is.

Masteries Back to Top

FORGET ABOUT THIS SECTION, old masteries.

Abilities Back to Top

W
Q
E
Q
Q
R
Q
E
Q
E
R
E
E
W
W
R
W
W
Passive
Q
2
4
5
7
9
W
1
14
15
17
18
E
3
8
10
12
13
R
6
11
16
HERE'S HOW TO JUNGLE CLEAR EARLY PATH, AND TIPS :D


Here is a map of where you should be pumping your Bushwacks throughout the game as often as possible.

I call those ''choke-points'', as enemies usually tend to step on them and reveal themselves.

lolppolk.jpg
When playing MID, if you're taking a lot of harass and playing vs 91_64.png38_64.png117_64.png103_64.png7_64.png157_64.png238_64.png for example, putting a second point in E at level 3 can be very good.




Items Back to Top

Starting Items

    For jungle !
    For Mid !

Core Items

    I really like the Stalkers Blade personally, but a lot of very good Nidalee players go for Skirmishers. Choose whichever you prefer, I think both are fine and viable.
    Lich Bane is now my GO TO second item on Nidalee. Almost 100% of games I will rush Lich Bane second item to get insane burst potential and snowball a few more kills. I will then follow up lich bane with Zhonyas - Also about 80% of games. Zhonyas allows this playstyle to work. You play super aggro, land a spear - leap in and kill someone, then zhonyas to avoid getting burst down. Hopefully your team follows up at this point.
    For Mid-lane - Go to first item.
    Void staff is also almost always in my builds - usually as a 3rd of 4th item as a jungler. Liandry's really isn't bad either when the enemy team is stacking MR.
    FINAL BUILD FOR JUNGLER - 90% OF GAMES.
    FINAL BUILD FOR MID NIDALEE - 70% of the time.

Situational Items

    Abyssal Mask and Spirit Visage are both great items on Nidalee if you're facing heavy AP poke. This is extremely popular as of writing this (Xerath, Zyra, etc.) Nidalee works pretty damn well with a few defensive items, especially if you find yourself out of position a lot and dying.
    Other situational and good items on Nidalee.

JUNGLE NIDALEE

A lot has changed in the past year.

Nidalee went from an extremely good pick, contested, picked and banned very often, to basically a niche pick for those who are extremely experienced on her.

Don't get me wrong, I think Nidalee is really strong. Probably about 10% less than before - but considering she was considered the most OP champ in the game at that time, 10% less is really not that much.

People sort of forgot about her - at least in lower elo. I still see her banned at around Masters/Challenger level.
 
There isn't much changed in the playstyle either- you're still going to want to focus on your strenghts as Nidalee jungle, mainly the fact you are extremely mobile and can EASILY outfarm almost every jungler in the game.

I even see challenger Nidalee mains hesitating on what they should build. Some go with 1402.png some with 1414.png and even some with 1410.png.


MID NIDALEE BUILD


My Nidalee build is very glass Canon for Mid, because my goal is not to be an off-tank anymore, but rather the main source of AP Damage. 

1056_32.png start is just standard, I have been using it forever and it works perfect.

  3165_32.png is just a very cost efficient item. It provides decent AP, mana regen, CDR, on top of that sweet grievious wound.


3027.png is an item that was HIGHLY popular on Nidalee for so damn long - and for me this just isn't the way to go anymore.

If you're a little less experienced on Nidalee, I think Rod can be a good choice, because it can make up for a lot of mistakes. It's a scaling item that suits someone who doesn't play as aggressively in the early game and doesn't try to snowball with a Lichbane for example.


The second you get caught, it's pretty much over, but if you can keep out of harms reach, you'll deal...Well, TONS OF DAMAGE. This is the reason why an "All-In" build is so risky. It's EXTREMELY rewarding, and VERY fun to play, but also gets very frustrating if you aren't experienced.

I've had instances where I was SUPER fed (lets say 20-0-10 for the sake of it) and still died in a 1v1 against a burst-type champion like Zed or Syndra who weren't fed.

Being fed on a build where you need to "All-In" is a double-edged sword. You feel like you can 1-shot anything, but remember people can also kill you if you fail to land your spears and combo.

BUT, Nidalee is SUPER mobile, so if you play well, you can usually get away from most of the damage people throw at you.

This is why 3157_32.png is a good item to consider almost every game as a 3rd-4th item

 It allows to get out of situations where you would have died, or it simply allows for your team mates to catch up if you decide to go full-crazy all-in with your pounce.

Matchups Back to Top

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

  • Ahri
    Medium
  • Anivia
    Medium
  • Diana
    Hard
  • Dr. Mundo
    Hard
  • Ekko
    Easy
  • Fizz
    Medium
  • Karthus
    Easy
  • Kassadin
    Medium
  • Katarina
    Medium
  • Kayle
    Medium
  • Kha'Zix
    Hard
  • LeBlanc
    Medium
  • Lee Sin
    Medium
  • Lulu
    Medium
  • Master Yi
    Medium
  • Nocturne
    Hard
  • Orianna
    Medium
  • Pantheon
    Medium
  • Rengar
    Hard
  • Riven
    Hard
  • Ryze
    Hard
  • Swain
    Medium
  • Syndra
    Medium
  • Talon
    Medium
  • Twisted Fate
    Medium
  • Veigar
    Medium
  • Vel'Koz
    Easy
  • Viktor
    Medium
  • Xerath
    Medium
  • Yasuo
    Hard
  • Zed
    Hard
  • Ziggs
    Medium

VS

Ahri

Medium

Ahri is an almost fully skill-shot champion, meaning this will be a fully skilled match-up.


The better player will win.

You have a lot of mobility, so I would say this plays in your favor. You can easily dodge her ahriseduce.png and her ahriorbofdeception.png by pouncing around.

The biggest challenge with Ahri is her post-6 combo, where she will ahritumble.png into a ahriseduce.png. If she lands that, see ya baby, you're dead.

Consider a 3065.png 3001.png or maybe even 3102.png.

Squishy build is a no-no against Ahri, she will always out-damage you, even if you're ahead. So going off-tank, MREZ heavy will give you the edge later on and will make sure she can't 1 shot you.

VS

Anivia

Medium

Same goes for Anivia, she has a huge early weakness, and you can now abuse Nidalee's early power to win lane.


Dodge the Q and try to zone her with spears.

VS

Diana

Hard

Luckily for us Nidalee players, Diana isn't very popular.


She's one of Nidalee's main counters, because of her gap-closer and HUGE burst potential.

Diana is one of the good examples of why and when you should be building off-tank.

If she can't 1-shot you, you win, since Diana fully focused on a quick-combo, but when her spells are on cooldown she can't do much.

Build an early 3065.png if she gets fed. If YOU get fed, or she gets behind, build 3001.png instead, and fuck her up.

BE CAREFUL. Even if you get SUPER far ahead (unless you've built a lot of tankiness) she will 1 shot you). This is why 3027.png is 100% buy. 

VS

Dr. Mundo

Hard

DR. Mundo is such a pain in the ass for Nidalee. Even with 3165.png, that's if you decide to get it simply to counter him, he will wreck your face in.


Very tanky, and does a lot of damage. The best thing to do is again to play quite safe, and try to avoid picking fights with him. He'll win almost every single time.

Of course, a combination of 3065.png 3001.png and 3165.png can get you places against a Mundo.

You'll still need to play it very well, poke, and use your mobility to dodge his cleavers.

VS

Ekko

Easy

I would say Ekko isn't much of a problem for Nidalee, and actually a pretty easy and favorable match up in your advantage.


Ekko is EXTREMELY weak early game, and has difficulty clearing his jungle on the first clear.

If you can gank him at his Red (or blue if you start blue side) you can most likely get a kill on him every time.

He his squishy, and high AP just like you. Late game he might wreck you, so try to snowball early against him when you can.

It's all about using your mobility to dodge his ekkoQ.png, and make sure not to get caught in his ekkoW.png.

A mid-late game Ekko is a force to be reckon with, so don't get too cocky and use your poke first, even if you are ahead !

VS

Fizz

Medium

Fizz has good burst and a gap closer. 


He is very difficult to deal with if you aren't used to his play style and even more if you aren't used to Nidalee. You need to play safe, farm with spears as much as possible.

Try to poke, don't get too close unless you've landed some good damage on him.

Pick up a 3157_32.png to avoid his ult damage and burst. Also, and of course like against most assassins, consider off-tankish items like 3065.png and 3027.png.

Just like many other champions, Fizz is an ''all-in'' assassin, with not much follow-up. So if you can survive his initial burst with your itemization, you will win the fights.

Good positioning and good use of your mobility will win you this match-up.

VS

Karthus

Easy

Karthus is an EXTREMELY squishy champion with no gap closer, nor sustain. Respect his pre-6 lay waste power, don't try to auto-attack him. Let him push the wave and farm under turret.


Once you hit level 6, land some spears and go in for easy kills with cougar form.

I always take 14.png vs him to increase my kill potential.
Pick up an early 3157_32.png to deny his ult completely and GG.

VS

Kassadin

Medium

With Kassadin's nerf, AND Nidalee rework, there isn't much to this match-up. I recommend maybe going hybrid, maybe leaning towards AD (Taking AD runes can be good) since his shield won't matter if you do mostly AD damage.


Auto-Attack harrass him, heal yourself.

Not much to it.

VS

Katarina

Medium
Her post-6 burst is insane and you need to respect it. She's hard to hit with spears due to her mobility.

The good thing vs Kat is that she usually uses her spell to CS and you can take advantage of this by going cougar form and poking with your regular combo.

3.png Can be good.
3157_32.pngIs recommended. 

VS

Kayle

Medium

Kayle is an interesting match-up and one I had a lot of trouble with a while ago but that I win almost 100% of the time now.


Kayle is a predictable champion. She has a HIGH kill potential but low sustain. Her range is limited.

You need to RESPECT her early game damage with her Q-E combo. Let her push with her AOE, try to poke her with Auto-Attacks in the little gap of time when her E is on cooldown, and maybe even pounce in if possible.

Don't get too close, poke from good positioning, use your cougar form and pounce to run away as SOON as she tries to all-in you.

Don't ever try to 1v1 her if she's full HP. Also, try to trick her into using her ult with spears and when you know it's down, go in for the cougar execute ;)

I take 14.png vs her too.

VS

Kha'Zix

Hard

Kha'Zix is a heavy counter to Nidalee.


Extremely high damage assassin with a gap close. BUT, he has no CC except for his slow.

This can help you just escape, but note you'll pretty much never be able to 1v1 him unless he's behind and you're fed.

Ganking him early can be a good idea, as Kha'Zix is also quite weak.

CAREFUL for his Empowered khazixQ.png early tho, it will shit on your face.

Same thing for late-game. Consider 3742.png as a counter to him.

VS

LeBlanc

Medium
Since Leblanc's nerf, there isn't much to her anymore.

Just respect her damage out-put, don't get cocky, and you should win lane.

Land your spears before you ever consider going in cougar form, as always.

3001_32.png can be decent.

VS

Lee Sin

Medium

Lee Sin Jungle can be one of the hardest match-ups earlier on. 


I find he is extremely quick to clear his jungle, and can out-damage you early on if he decides to invade you.

I usually try to play extremely safe in my jungle if I have to go against a Lee, since I know I won't be able to out-damage him if he finds me in my jungle.

Try to ward, kill the scuttle crabs before him, and stick to mostly farming. Careful of counter ganks if you decide to gank your team mates, because a Lee that gets rolling early can wreck you mid-late with his combo.

If you get through the early game, you should be fine, especially if he doesn't get rolling

VS

Lulu

Medium
Lulu, unlike most mids, has almost just as much range poke as you in the laning phase and hers can go through minions. 

Landing a kill pre-6 can be good if you can poke a bit and follow up in cougar form.

Don't hesitate to put 2 points in E if she heavily harasses you.

I also try to roam or ask for jungler assistance to get kills, since there is very little kill potential on her 1v1 post 6.

Treat Lulu as a support-AP rather than any other mid. This means you won't prioritize her when getting kills. She's super utility focused, but still deals a ton of damage.

I tend to not even try to kill a Lulu, as it's pretty much what she wants. Again, ask for ganks if you can, and someone with CC will shit on her.

You can poke her if you can.

VS

Master Yi

Medium

Master Yi is an interesting champion to play against.


While you are extremely gank oriented and mobile, Master Yi will pretty much farm for 25 minutes before shitting on your team 1v5.

This means you have to be very active early on, and snowball your way to victory before Yi can actually do anything.

DON'T FIGHT HIM in his jungle, unless you are actually fed or just way ahead of him.

He will take you on 1V1 quite easily, even if you are fed and he isn't.

THATS WHAT YI DOES.

VS

Nocturne

Hard

Nocturne, oh Nocturne.


I have a deep hatred for this champion every time I see one.

Nocturne is one of your main counters, simply because he has everything he needs to kill you, over and over again.

Counters to Nidalee are basically: CC/GAP CLOSERS/ASSASSINS

Nocturne has all 3 of these things. He will nocturneparanoia.png on your face while you're jungling, nocturneunspeakablehorror.png you until you're feared and by then you're already dead.

Oh, and did I forget he'll also just nocturneshroudofdarkness.png each of your spears so you can basically never get a full combo on him ?

Yeah, to beat this guy you have to play as a team.

Try baiting his ult out, and his W, then go in on him.

If he plays full AD, he'll be quite squishy and you can actually kill him on your own if his cooldowns are not up,

VS

Orianna

Medium

Orianna has good wave-clear, which is difficult to deal with as a Nidalee since you'll constantly have to farm under turret. 


This lane is hard but if you position yourself correctly, poke well and stay safe until she is low enough or doesn't have mana, you can easily 1v1 her with 14.png.

3157_32.png is always good to deny her ult damage. Needs to be timed perfectly though.

3027.png along with 3065.png will help a lot deal with her burst as well.

Mid-late game is a fully skilled match-up. The better player will win. If you can use your mobility to dodge her damage, and position yourself well, you will win.

VS

Pantheon

Medium

Pantheon is a very early-game focused champion that will snowball if you let him.


Fortunately for us, we're also pretty damn good early game ! (At least in our jungle).

Pantheon will out-gank you until the MID-GAME (10-15 minutes) and you need to ACCEPT THAT.

DO NOT TRY TO COUNTER GANK, UNLESS YOU REALLY KNOW WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

Rather, focus on OUT-FARMING Pantheon while he wastes his time ganking.

WARD A LOT FOR YOUR TEAM MATES. MAKE SURE THEY DON'T DIE TO HIS GANKS.

You can do this by having good map awareness, warding, and pinging as soon as you see Pantheon.

If people can see him moving around, and he fails most of his ganks, you will get ahead and shit on him later.

VS

Rengar

Hard

Rengar also has everything he needs to kill you.


And funnily enough, even in games when I get SUPER ahead, a Rengar can mostly find the way to kill me anyways using his ult.

This is where 2043.png these come in handy.

You will be using them as your safe-guard, as a means of not letting him get the jump on you.

The best counter to a rengar is vision, and knowing exactly where he is at all times.

This way you can prevent him getting the best of you, and kill him like the immobile champion he is while his ult is not up.

DO NOT FORGET TO BUY THIS 3363.png TO SCOUT HIS JUNGLE AND FIND HIM.

VS

Riven

Hard

Riven is one of the best champions to take a beating on a Nidalee. She has a much if not more mobility than you, INSANE post-6 burst and a pretty damn good early game presence. You basically can NEVER use Cougar Form vs Riven, unless you want to die, of course.


Wait for her to use her Q to farm, then try to harass with auto-attacks. Always be aware of her insane gap closing ability and burst with stun.

DON'T let her flash all in you post-6 like a lot of higher elo Rivens do. This is probably more true than with any other match-up, stay far, poke, let her win lane. You will have a better presence in team-fights than her if your team is smart enough not to engage before you poke.

3.png is highly recommended.

VS

Ryze

Hard

Ryze is extremely hard to play against for Nidalee. He has so much burst, and can heal himself quite easily out of your poke with his ultimate.


The best counter to ryze is basically intelligence. You have to know how his combo works, and when his passive is down to know when to go in on him.

3065.png 3111.png 3027.png 3001.png are all no brainers against Ryze.

Try to be tanky enough so he can't 1 shot you. And use your range to your advantage, Ryze is extremely immobile.

14.png will really help if you're MID/TOP to get the best of him when his cooldowns are not up.


VS

Swain

Medium
This use to be a hard match-up for Nidalee, but since she has a good lanning phase now, you can deal with him early and gain a considerable lead if you zone him and maybe kill him pre 6.

14.png is a must. 
Consider getting an early 3165_32.png since it will greatly help you deal with him.

The good thing is Swain is very item reliant, so if you can get an edge early, snowball it. 

VS

Syndra

Medium
Syndra is extremely difficult to deal with, especially good ones. But your mobility can allow you to have the edge in this match-up. 


You have to be careful not to let her all-in you post-6. 

Early 3157_32.png is HIGHLY recommended and keep it for her ulti.

Poke her, she has no sustain. Be very careful during laning phase, dodge the stun and don't let her Q spam you to death. 

If she misses her stun, and you can get your passive mark on her, you pretty much are guaranteed a kill.

VS

Talon

Medium
 Get an early 3157_32.png, along with 3027.png.

He is very item reliant and quite squishy, but has insane damage even early on.

 If you can survive through laning phase, use your poke before team fights and NEVER underestimate his burst. Also, never try to 1v1 him post-6 unless hes SUPER low and or has no mana.

Talon has a gap-closer CC that will really fuck you up if you aren't being careful.

I recommend trying to get tanky against him to help survive his burst. Then you can beat him.

VS

Twisted Fate

Medium
TF is an extremely interesting match-up.

It is quite a skilled-focus Match-up, and you need to be VERY aware of his pickacard.png cooldown.

Most TFs will use it to FARM with blue-card and Red.

WHEN TF USES HIS W, IT'S YOUR CHANCE TO TRY TO ZONE HIM, AND MAYBE COUGAR IN TO COMBO HIS FACE IN.

Careful about ganks, because with a simple Yellow card, you will die to any gank.

ALSO, TF is known for his roams, and you need to be ready for that.

It's all about pushing really hard against a TF, to NOT let him roam freely. IF HE USES HIS ULT, PUSH THE TOWER, GET OBJECTIVES !

The biggest counter to TF is GROUPING. So try to get your team to group on early (10-15 minutes) and push together mid-lane. If he can't use his ult, TF loses a lot of his potential.

3157.png is good against his yellow-card, if you can time it well. 3065.png and 3102.png are also very good. Especially 3102.png since it'll completely deny his ULT-YELLOW card combo.

VS

Veigar

Medium

Another quite unpopular champion, yet extremely strong vs Nidalee.


If you build like I recommend, you will be a very squishy AP machine, exactly what veigar likes.

3155_32.png can be a very good item choice early, even if you build AP (this will allow you to stop his 1 shot kill combo).

Combined with a 3157_32.png and maybe even 3102_32.png, you can deal with him.

Make sure you land at least 1-2 good spears before going in.

The good thing is, most veigars don't build any defensive items, which allows you to kill him if you're fast enough.

Try to bait the stun and not get hit by it, then you can go all in on him.

VS

Vel'Koz

Easy

A good Vel'Koz can be quite annoying for a Nidalee, but he really isn't much of a difficult champion to deal with if you play your cards correctly.


To be honest, this is a FULLY skilled match-up. The better player will win, most likely.

I put this one easy since I haven't come across any great Velkoz that gave me trouble.

Dodge his Q by staying behind minions, you can even auto-attack harass him since he can't do much and doesn't have sustain like you do.

Only thing to be careful about : His post-6 burst.

Don't get too cocky. If he lands his E on you, he can kill you.

Use your mobility to dodge his spells and cougar form into melee range to own him.

VS

Viktor

Medium

Viktor is rarely played and for that reason, most people underestimate him.


He's extremely strong vs Nidalee because of his ultimate's silence and burst. He has very good poke with Q-E and will trade with you if you get too cocky.

You need to poke him, play it safe, let him run out of mana and then try an all-in with 14.png.

Try to dodge the E damage and don't let him free harass you with Q earlier on. 

Respect his R damage/silence post-6 and you should be fine.

VS

Xerath

Medium

Xerath used to be good against Nidalee, but not as much now that she has cougar level 1.


You have INSANE mobility, and he doesn't. Use this to your advantage...

This is basically a long range poke war during the lanning phase, but you have the edge. If you get to land a spear, don't hesitate to jump in and deal that W-E-Q combo damage !

Be aware when his passive comes up, don't let him auto-attack you to take advantage of the mana bonus. Try to make him run OOM by spamming his spells on minions and consider putting 2 points in E early to out-sustain his poke.

VS

Yasuo

Hard

Good Yasuo's are a pain in the ass for Nidalee. They will shit on you during laning phase if you don't play carefully enough.


Yasuo has unlimited gap-closers(or almost) when there's a minion wave, which makes him very hard to deal with. He has huge burst with his ult post-6, can block your spears with wall and bait you into diving.

How to win lane : Play safe, auto-attack him when you can, put 2 points in E early if needed.  Try breaking his passive shield with an Auto-Attack and go in with Cougar Form when he goes to CS (make sure he doesn't have his Q stacked) and poke him like that until he gets low enough for you to all in with 14.png.

Consider 3025_32.png and 3157_32.png.
3.png is good.

Play safe all throughout the game, even if you get ahead. Use poke, bait his wall and you should win this later on if he doesn't kill you in laning phase.

VS

Zed

Hard

The Zed match-up is based on how good the Zed player is. Sometimes I'll have a VERY hard time vs him or just a very very easy time.


You need to respect his burst post-6 and ALWAYS run when he ults you, don't try to fight him until AFTER the mark is popped. 

Nidalee is actually quite strong vs Zed's ult because of her mobility. As soon as you see him ult, use cougar form, wait for him to reappear and pounce away and try to dodge his Shuriken damage.

Once his ult is on CD, you can allow yourself to play much more aggressive and use your cougar combo to harass him. 

 3157_32.png early is very good.
3.pngcan be good.

Don't let him harass you too much in late with his W-Q combo. Once he wastes his shadow tho, you can allow yourself to auto-attack harass him.

VS

Ziggs

Medium
Ziggs isn't as hard as it used to be since the Nidalee rework.

It used to be a VERY hard lane pre-6, but now that you can cougar form around the lane, dodge his abilities, and shit on his face, you should be fine.

Try staying behind or away from your minions to not take the AOE damage from his bombs.


When you have blue, don't be afraid to trade with him, you have a heal, he doesn't.

About Me ! Back to Top

Hi. For those of you who don't know who I am, I am Railerik, a S3, S4, S5, S6 and S7 Diamond 1 player.


Also reached Challenger S3-S4 on Latin America North. (If that even counts).

I'm also a YOUTUBER : https://www.youtube.com/user/GamingForNooobz

I love making guides, and commentaries, especially for Nidalee <3

I've been playing Nidalee since her release back in 2009. 

I probably have over 3000 games on her accumulated over the years, which means you can trust I have tried every possible build paths, skill order, item builds and strategies surrounding her.

I know her ins and outs more than most people and she's been one of the few champions who has been and remains strong no matter the metas. Which is also a reason why I love her so much.

People often ask me "Don't you get tired ?" or "Why Nidalee ?" 

To that I say "no way in a life time can I get bored of such a fun and versatile champion !"

I play Nidalee because I love seeing people say to me "WOW that was amazing", and that's exactly the kind of reactions I get out of people when I play her.

She has so much "play making" potential and can outplay in 1v1 any champion if played correctly. She can also solo carry teams if played perfectly which is how I was able to get so high elo even tho I don't consider myself to be that good of a player. (Trust me, you don't want to see me play ADC).

People consider me as a one-trick-poney, since I am no where near as good with any other champions, which I think is true.

I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THE GUIDE ;3 Make sure to leave me comments, suggestions for new sections, or questions you have I didn't answer in the guide !

Here are some Screen Shots for you guys of my Stats and elo.
S3 :1473050_601093246595002_1689451570_n.png

My Nid stats from S3 :Nidalee OP.png

I also transferred a smurf to the Latin America North server when the wave of DDOS on NA happened a few weeks ago and got it challenger mostly ONLY playing Nidalee :

123213213.jpg

Overview Back to Top

Nidalee has gone through so many changes in the past 2 years, going from her old FULL POKE champion, to a new updated jungle monster. She's been nerfed time and time again, and now starting to receive a few buffs after she's been quite lacking.

AS OF RIGHT NOW (PATCH 5.24) She is quite weak IN MY OPINION and could use a few tweaks. She's still seeing play in very high elo, which is a good sign, but is definitely not a pub stomper like before. You need extreme mechanics and game knowledge to get the most out of this champion, which gets me to my next point.

HERE ARE 2 GUIDES I MADE RECENTLY. One for Jungle, one for MID.

Nidalee has one of the highest skill-cap in the game, which is really what makes her so fun to play.

If you invest enough time, you can end up winning 95% of the match-ups mid, no matter if they're suppose to be losing ones.

Also, even at the highest elo (AKA challenger/D1) people have trouble dealing with a good Nidalee, which is why you see so many of the top ladder players playing her consistently.

When you pick Nidalee, you demand that the opposing team stays constantly aware of your position on the map, you demand that they be careful where they recall, that they be constantly weary of a spear coming out of nowhere. You're mobile, and can gank and have presence all over the map.

Learning to play Nidalee takes time, but is very rewarding. The amount of flashy plays and outplays you can make is insane. This means if you aren't invested in becoming a good Nidalee, don't even bother picking her up !

Instead go play easier champions that only require a minimal investment to get the best out of. 

She has the potential to either win or lose the game for her team, and it all depends on whether you know how to make the most out of her kit and know how communicate well with your team about your intentions.

Nidalee demands that you adapt your playstyle to every match, which is also a big reason why I think she has one of the highest skill-cap in the game.

Some games, you'll have to play super aggressive, roam, look for kills everywhere. Build that "All-In" build I've talked about earlier. This allows you to CARRY !

Others you'll most likely be playing as an OFF-TANK, using as much as your kit for utility and helping your team mates out.

And sometimes, you'll have to do all of that within the same game (actually most of the time). Meaning you'll start off maybe as an assassin, with a lot of kills, then later on switch to a bit more tanky champion.

Playing Nidalee also demands an insane amount of map-awareness and presence of mind. You need to know where everyone is on the map, where people usually recall, who is low, who is not. Learning how people react to your movement, and spears is extremely rewarding as well. I've learned that if I pounced left, people usually run right, vice-versa, and use this information to my advantage.

Playing mind-tricks on your opponent is really fun, and will make you proud of yourself when you get to "out-play" them.

Overall, she's a very fun, but hard champion to play, offering great carry potential when used to her full potential and is very frustrating to play against, often making people tilt and do stupid mistakes against you by being overly aggressive for example. 

I've used her to climb MANY accounts from low-elo to diamond 1, and even Challenger on my main.

So, I can safely affirm that she is great at all elo's, when in the right hands. 
And I can't recall the amount of games where people gave up solely because I got so fed they thought it was impossible to make a come-back. 

So, eh, yeah guys, GO PLAY HER NOW AND JOIN THE NIDALEE LEGION :D !

Vision Back to Top

Vision is a very important aspect of the game, but even more for champions like Nidalee, or Xerath, or even Jayce.

You have an ability with an INSANE amount of range that can allow you to make the difference between a won team fight or a lost one.

It can be used to engage, to simply harass, or even as a finishing tool (which is my favorite use).

Unlike most champions, you have a built in vision tool that allows you to prevent a lot of the damage from an early roam and actually turn it around in your favor. (When playing MID)


Bushwacks are a HUGE part of your kit, and often something less skilled players don't give enough attention.

ESPECIALLY with the rework, there is NO reason for you not to be CONSTANTLY pumping these out a little bit everywhere, during the lanning phase, and even later on during the game. When JUNGLING, assure you place some at the entrance of your jungle, or in specific bushes.

IF YOU SPOT THE ENEMY JUNGLER, YOU CAN BE PREVENTING YOUR TEAM MATES FROM DYING, SIMPLY FROM A LITTLE BUSHWACK THAT COSTS BARELY NO MANA ! SO GO AND PLACE THESE THINGS BOYS :D

So, where and when should you place Bushwhacks?

Glad you ask !

Again here is the MAP where I usually place my Bushwacks:

lolppolk.jpg

Where is entirely up to you and really depends on whether you are blue or purple side.


Of course, there are spots that are more important than others, such as 2 bushwhacks in each side-bush in the mid-lane. (IF THAT'S WHERE YOU'RE LANNING)

But mostly, it's about trying to hide them, and place them in spots where you think people will step on them. (Mostly in the jungle)


The bush right behind dragon (over blue team’s red buff) is an excellent place to keep a bushwhack to prevent bot lane ganks.


One in the bush near dragon is also pretty good.


My favorite one is probably in-between any enemy turret and its nearest wall (basically the path most people take when they retreat).


This is SO good because it forces people to make a decision: either step on it, and risk having you jump on their face, or go around it, and waste time, maybe allowing you to catch up or poke them.

Since the regular wards have been removed, vision is becoming more and more important, and every item you have or spell that can provide that becomes more important than before. 

This means you NEED to keep putting bushwhacks throughout the ENTIRE game to assist your team with general vision of objectives.


"Bushwhacking" needs to become a second nature, just like breathing.

Finally, vision is not only defensive, it can be used offensively. If an enemy steps on a bushwhack you placed and you see him, low HP, recalling behind his turret, you can often use that information to pick off free kills from a safe distance with Nid, and those are the most rewarding, trust me. 

Early Game (0-10 minutes) Back to Top

JUNGLING TIP: 

If you are jungling, and starting RED side (which means the higher side of the map, where your bot lane would be near your blue) you can try to cheeze an early level 2 kill on the enemy jungler by taking W second, and pouncing over dragon wall to kill them at their red.

THIS IS RISKY, but can actually win you the game if you snowball of of it, by stealing their red, and maybe staying around doing their camp in that side of the jungle, and killing them again once they're back.

If you're starting BLUE side, you can always try to do RED to their BLUE, but it's very difficult to be there in time, and also won't work most of the time.

ANOTHER tip here, is if you think YOU will be invaded when playing blue side, start at your blue, and go steal their red...OR start at their red and do your blue after (this is safer if you make sure not to be seen on your way there).

Early game on Nidalee jungle should be spent mostly farming and clearing as fast as you can, while also maybe looking for the enemy jungler when you finish doing your blue. 

NIDALEE HAS ONE OF THE FASTEST FIRST CLEAR IN THE GAME, SO YOU CAN USE THIS TO YOUR ADVANTAGE.

If you start RED side and don't think you can invade their jungler (like a Lee-Sin or something), ganking them at their blue can be a good idea. Most of the time they'll be quite low or simply won't be doing it just yet.

This is also risky, but Nidalee has to be played as a risk/reward champion, because that's how you succeed with her.


DO NOT SPEND TOO MUCH TIME GANKING EARLY ON IN THE GAME.


This is the biggest mistake so many Nidalee (including me before) are doing, which is setting them behind and just making them lose.

Ganking on Nidalee should be opportunistic. This means if you see there's a good chance for a kill or a flash, and the enemy top is pushing for example, make sure to go there after clearing your top side camps.

If you can pull off a kill or a flash, good ! 

DO NOT TRY TO CREATE AN OPPORTUNITY BY CAMPING A BUSH OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT.

Nidalee needs farm...And lots of it.

If YOUR ally is pushing, DO NOT BOTHER. Keep farming your jungle, and if anything help your team have vision by killing the Scuttle Crab and warding the enemy jungle. 

IF YOU CAN KEEP TRACK OF THE ENEMY JUNGLER WHILE FARMING, YOU'RE GOING TO GET AHEAD.

If the enemy jungle spends his time ganking, but is always seen by your wards, he will not be getting much out of it, while you can farm and get a huge level and gold advantage.


Mid Game (10-20 minutes) Back to Top

THIS IS WHERE NIDALEE SHINES.


Nidalee doesn't have the best early game (arguable I guess) or late game of junglers.

BUT, she's extremely good Mid-Game.

Your damage is pretty insane by now, if you have 3027.png and 1402.png, and you should be able to brawl with most junglers and kill people 1v1.

MID-GAME IS WHEN YOU ARE ACTIVELY TRYING TO PUSH FOR OBJECTIVES, AND USE YOUR SPEARS TO POKE THE ENEMIES OUT OF LANE.

Also, you can use your bushwacks and vision to catch people in their jungle, and create opportunities for more objectives.

DO NOT FORGET TO KEEP FARMING THE JUNGLE. YOUR CLEAR SPEED IS INSANE, AND YOU CAN CLEAR ALL CAMPS ONE BY ONE IN AROUND 1-2 MINUTES IF DOING IT CORRECTLY.

Gank according to where you are farming, this will help you stay ahead in levels ! 

EXAMPLE: Ganking TOP LANE, I will do the closest 2 camps to top BEFORE ganking, assuring some gold and XP even if we get no kills.

THIS IS WHAT I CALL MACRO-MANAGEMENT.

Manage your jungling-path with your intended lane to gank, and this will assure you stay on top of your game.

Most of the time, people will still be lanning by now, so this is when you might want to start pushing for towers and help them win their lane.

Once they've got their respective lane towers down, they can group and help your team secure more objectives.

THIS IS ALSO WHEN YOU WILL DECIDE WHICH DEFENSIVE ITEM YOU GO FOR.

Look for who is fed on the enemy time, and itemize accordingly.

If their AP carries are fed, grab a 3065.png or 3102.png.

If AD is fed, go for 3157.png.

Late Game (20 minutes and on) Back to Top

WHILE NIDALEE ISN'T WEAK LATE, SHE'S ALSO NOT THE STRONGEST.

Unless you are extremely fed by now (5 kills and more, and farmed) you will have trouble being an assassin or killing people on your own.

THIS IS WHY YOU GET YOUR TEAM TO GROUP.

Poke, help your team get vision, and pressure.

Nidalee is extremely strong at pushing towers and getting control of objectives with her spears.

3363.png IS MANDATORY by now, because you should be level 9 and above.

Use the vision to out-rotate the enemy and make good decisions.

Remember you are quite squishy !! A lot of Nidalee players make the mistake of jumping in head-first into fights to engage.

You are an OFF-TANK (that is, if you have built defensive items) so act like it.

Be the pussy you were always meant to be, and use your spears always as your main tool. Poke, finish fleeing enemies, use your mobility to position and re-position.

Most Nidalee games are won over out-plays and good positioning, along with objective control and good macro-play.

A lot of people will focus you if you are fed or doing well, use this to your advantage !

If you pretend to get caught, and then use 3157.png and 4.png you can sometimes win your teams the game in the later stages.

You are EXTEMELY STRONG AT PUSHING at this point, so maybe try to use that to help your team get more objectives and control.



THAT'S ABOUT IT GUYS !


GOOD LUCK OUT THERE :D
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