Nautilus Build Guide

Anchor Management: Solo Lane Nautilus **META UPDATE!**

Uploader Ryan Egan
Updated 5 years ago
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After putting some serious thought and testing into my builds and playstyles with Nautilus, I've decided that Nautilus is most viable as an AP Tank Solo, or an AP Carry/Off Tank Solo. Nautilus can counter a wide range of AP Carries at mid, and can out-sustain almost every Top Laner.

Go Tank build if your team set-up is as follows: [.]AP Top or Mid [.]AD Ranged/Support Bot [.]AD/AP Off-Tank or Non-Tank Jungler Go AP Carry build if your team set-up is as follows: [.]Off Tank, Bruiser, or Tank Top [.]Tanky or Bruiser Jungle [.]AD Ranged/Support Bot DO NOT GO FULL TANK MID IF YOU HAVE NO AP CARRY! This will make your team viable until about the 25-30 minute mark, then their damage will surpass yours and you won't have enough force to kill the enemy team.

Yeah, 9/14/7. GET AT ME, META GAME. To support his excruciatingly low mana pool and moderate mana costs, the Mp5 and Mana per level is very necessary to have sustain in your lane up until RoA. Since he needs to be able to take down an opponent in lane, the 9 points in the Offense tree to grab Magic Pen are very useful to maintain control in your lane. Since his W scales off of health, and he could use a little extra health regen, the 14 points in the Defense tree complement his sustainability even further.

SHUT UP. At level 6 you will be guarantee'd a kill with these runes. They will help you dominate your lane. [imgext=http://www.solomid.net/guide/runes/mark4.png] The Magic Pen marks along with your mastery will devastate your laning enemy. You'll notice that your Riptide will hit for an obscene amount at level 5, since they most likely won't have based by then to buy a null magic. [imgext=http://www.solomid.net/guide/runes/seal2.png] The Mana Per 5 Seals will synergize with your Utility talents and assist you with being able to sustain harass during the laning phase, pre-ROA. [imgext=http://www.solomid.net/guide/runes/glyph3.png] The Magic Resist glyphs are particularly important for early game sustain against your counters, which are mostly going to be AP champions. [imgext=http://www.solomid.net/guide/runes/quint3.png] AP Quints to give some power to your Riptide(E) and Depth Charge(R) early on in the game. [highlight]Well, okay... why not get Health Quints or other Tanky runes?[/highlight] [.]Very bursty when going for a kill, so you won't need the extra health. [.]Regrowth Pendant/Health Pot provide more than enough regen for the laning phase, along with your masteries. [.]When harassing, you're either going to be hitting E from a safe distance or running in to melee with your W shield up. Since your first hit will be a mini-stun, you won't even take damage to proc the shield if you play carefully.

[highlight]Early Game[/highlight] Start off with [imgsmall=items/regrowth-pendant.png][imgsmall=items/health-potion.png] and head to defend either blue or red (depending on jungler/side of map). After you're well into the laning phase and either your opponent has based or you killed him, go back to shop and pick up [imgsmall=items/boots-of-speed.png] along with either [imgsmall=items/ruby-crystal.png][imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png] or [imgsmall=items/catalyst-the-protector.png][imgsmall=items/sight-ward.png] depending on how much gold you have. If you have enough for a [imgsmall=items/sapphire-crystal.png] and a [imgsmall=items/ruby-crystal.png] get them both. [highlight]Early/Mid Game[/highlight] By now you're probably around level 7 or 8, and you're ready to base again. This is when you'll need to decide whether or not you need [imgsmall=items/ninja-tabi.png] or [imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png]. Upon returning to shop, pick up your [imgsmall=items/catalyst-the-protector.png] and grab either the components for your boots ([imgsmall=items/cloth-armor.png]/[imgsmall=items/null-magic-mantle.png]) or just the whole tier 2 boots themselves. If you have enough for a [imgsmall=items/blasting-wand.png], get it. If not, just buy [imgsmall=items/sight-ward2.png] and head back to your lane. [highlight]Mid Game[/highlight] At this point you'll have quite a bit of farming capability with your E/W combo, and you should have accumulated enough gold to buy your [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png] (850g after [imgsmall=items/catalyst-the-protector.png] and [imgsmall=items/blasting-wand.png]). As soon as you have the gold to get your Rod, base and quickly get it. You want those stacks to get maxed out as quickly as possible to abuse its usefulness. If you happened to have more than enough for your [imgsmall=items/rod-of-ages.png], check to see if your enemy is more AD heavy or AP heavy. From there you can either start building into your [imgsmall=items/frozen-heart.png], [imgsmall=items/force-of-nature.png], or [imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png]. Conditions for building each of the three Mid Game items: [.][imgsmall=items/abyssal-scepter.png] If your team has a few AP based Champions or you're confident that you can still tank effectively with giving up some survivability. Also works well against an AP Top champion. [.][imgsmall=items/frozen-heart.png] There are multiple AD carries on the enemy team, such as a Nocturne/Trynd/Twitch Jungle and an AD Carry bot. [.][imgsmall=items/force-of-nature.png] If you're not at a great level/farm advantage on your enemy team, don't risk an Abyssal Scepter unless it will greatly help your team. Build this instead. [highlight]Mid/Late Game[/highlight] At about the 30 minute marker, you should have both [imgsmall=items/frozen-heart.png] and [imgsmall=items/force-of-nature.png], or at least close to it. Then you can begin building your [imgsmall=items/warmogs-armor.png]. Try to get [imgsmall=items/giants-belt.png] as your first item, but if you are about to initiate a team fight or prepare for Baron/Dragon to spawn, just go ahead and buy a [imgsmall=items/ruby-crystal.png]. [highlight]Late Game[/highlight] After you get your [imgsmall=items/warmogs-armor.png], you'll have to think hard about what you want your Luxury item to be. Go [imgsmall=items/atmas-impaler.png] if you're already very tanky compared to the enemy team's damage and you really want to rip through them to win the game. Select [imgsmall=items/locket-of-the-iron-solari.png] if your teammates are being focused much more than you in team fights, and your support hasn't picked up this item. Pick [imgsmall=items/randuins-omen.png] if you have opponents such as Nocturne, Tryndamere, or Riven that are fairly fed and are focusing your AP/AD Carries. Go with [imgsmall=items/rylais-crystal-scepter.png] if you feel like your E slow just isn't enough to catch that tricky Nidalee or Caitlyn that keeps kiting you around. And finally, grab a [imgsmall=items/zekes-herald.png] if you've got a bunch of AD carries on your team for some odd reason. If you're building AP Carry/Off Tank, just substitute the Mid-Game and Late-Game items with the ones above.^^ [title]What Items NOT To Build, And Why NOT To Build Them[/title] [.][img=items/will-of-the-ancients.png] You're a tank! Why would you need WOTA?! Only circumstance would be if you had a WOTA dependent champion such as Kennen/Vlad on your team and you were the only one able to buy one. Even at that, it would have to be your 6th item. [.][img=items/banshees-veil.png] This really isn't worth it considering that you already have a good bit of mana from ROA/FH and you can mimic the Shield with your W when it comes to damage. Since you're the initiator and you enter with your Q to grip, a stun or snare on you won't stop your team from picking up a free kill. [.][img=items/lich-bane.png] and [img=items/trinity-force.png] I've thought about these two items quite a bit, and after further consideration there is one factor that really breaks this idea wide open. Your ability CDs are rather long. With your 10-20 second CD timers on Q-W-E, you really don't have much of a way to maximize these effects. The only way you could capitalize on this would be to have the items to play a ganking role during mid game to make those kills quicker and more efficient. Sure, you could use your Q on terrain to try and maximize the CRD/Proc combo, but the damage you lose from hitting Q to terrain nulls the gain from Lich Bane/Tri Force.

[highlight]WHO YOU COUNTER:[/highlight] [imgsmall=champ/annie.png][imgsmall=champ/chogath.png][imgsmall=champ/gangplank.png][imgsmall=champ/karthus.png][imgsmall=champ/kassadin.png][imgsmall=champ/kennen.png][imgsmall=champ/morgana.png][imgsmall=champ/mordekaiser.png][imgsmall=champ/nasus.png][imgsmall=champ/nidalee.png][imgsmall=champ/sion.png](AD[imgsmall=champ/pantheon.png][imgsmall=champ/udyr.png][imgsmall=champ/ziggs.png] [highlight]WHO YOU'RE EVEN WITH:[/highlight][imgsmall=champ/akali.png][imgsmall=champ/brand.png][imgsmall=champ/drmundo.png][imgsmall=champ/galio.png][imgsmall=champ/garen.png][imgsmall=champ/jax.png][imgsmall=champ/malphite.png][imgsmall=champ/olaf.png][imgsmall=champ/riven.png][imgsmall=champ/shen.png][imgsmall=champ/shyvana.png][imgsmall=champ/singed.png][imgsmall=champ/sion.png](AP)[imgsmall=champ/skarner.png][imgsmall=champ/swain.png][imgsmall=champ/tryndamere.png][imgsmall=champ/vladimir.png][imgsmall=champ/volibear.png][imgsmall=champ/warwick.png][imgsmall=champ/wukong.png][imgsmall=champ/yorick.png] [highlight]WHO COUNTERS YOU:[/highlight] [imgsmall=champ/irelia.png][imgsmall=champ/jarvaniv.png][imgsmall=champ/renekton.png][imgsmall=champ/rumble.png][imgsmall=champ/talon.png]

So, you've got the item and skill sequence down. But what do you do when Udyr comes racing out of that top brush in bear stance while a Jarvan IV is getting ready to flag you down for a first blood gank? Who do you ult in the upcoming Baron Team Fight? Vayne, Ahri, Sona... HALP ME! Well really, it takes practice. Let's start simple. [highlight]Laning Damage Combo's[/highlight] For Harassment: [imgsmall=skills/nautilus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/p.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/e.png] (W, Melee, E) For Chasing: [imgsmall=skills/nautilus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/q.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/p.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/e.png] (W, Q, Melee, E) For Straight Up Killing: [imgsmall=skills/nautilus/r.png][imgsmall=summoners/ignite.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/w.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/p.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/e.png][imgsmall=skills/nautilus/q.png] (R, Ignite, W, Melee, E, Q) Obviously you can put up your Shield and run over to smack the opponent while he's trying to last hit a creep, or maybe catch him with a Riptide while last hitting a few minions. That's all fine and dandy. Those three combo's are not the only ways to harass with Nautilus, just the most effective ways. If you hadn't figured it out already, you can also catch an opponent in 2 or 3 waves of your Riptide if you time it properly as they run towards/away from you. Although each following wave does 50% less damage than the initial wave, the more the merrier. [highlight]Escaping a Gank[/highlight] So, back to the [imgsmall=champ/udyr.png] and [imgsmall=champ/jarvaniv.png] scenario. This is probably the worst case scenario for a Nautilus. You hear a prince yell DEMACIAAAAAAAA!!!!1!111!! and see an Udyr come flying at you like an angry beaver, and you're stuck in a Circular arena with two of the most effective burst melee champions in the game. Your first instinct would be to flash away from the Udyr stun, right? Wrong. Wait for Jarvan IV to leap at you and then [imgsmall=summoners/flash.png] away, and then proceed to Q to either the wall terrain or a friendly turret. That is only one example of escaping a gank, but there are many other effective ways of getting rid of a pesky jungler that has found his way over to your lane. A very successful method of stopping a gank is by Shielding (W) just before you suspect an enemy Stun or Snare, then hit a Riptide (E) to slow your opponents while Anchoring away to safety. There are many other tricks to avoiding ganks that are unique to Nautilus, but I'm getting carpal tunnel just thinking about typing them all. After several matches and several deaths from Udyr/J4 combo's, you'll know just how to escape from ganks on Nautilus. [highlight]Team Fights[/highlight] Since [imgsmall=skills/nautilus/r.png]Depth Charge(R) not only knocks up your target, but all targets caught within the path of the charge, this can be a very effective tool in gaining dominance in a team fight. Here are some of the ways you can use this ability in a team fight: [.]Initiate on an out of position carry to pick up an easy advantage. [.]Use it on a support such as Soraka, Jana, or Sona, since they most often float around in the back of the team fight, allowing your carries to pick off your enemies without any heals and knocking up several others in the process. [.]Save your teammates! Use your Ultimate on an enemy that is clumped with another carry trying to chase down your beloved AP or Ranged AD Champion. Nautilus is also classified as an [highlight]initiator[/highlight]. This means that he can start team fights without risking immediate death. An easy way to start a teamfight is by just hooking an enemy out of the group! Grab their foolish Graves that just used Quickdraw to take out a Superminion in front of the Nexus Turret, or yank a Support that's trying to place a ward at the upcoming Baron spawn. Essentially, Nautilus's role is comprehensively a Tanky Disruptor that can pick any target he wants and have them killed within seconds after using his ult. He can use his W to draw fire to him while chasing down enemies with his Q, slowing enemy disrupters with his E, and even annoy some opponents on the way with his passive. I would rate him as one of the strongest late game Tanks for the current patch.

This is shortly after I thought up this build and bought Nautilus: [imgext=http://img252.imageshack.us/img252/9163/nautpage.png] After getting into a few [highlight]Ranked Games[/highlight] with Nautilus, I managed to pull these scores: [imgext=http://img706.imageshack.us/img706/6342/nautranked.png] *UPDATE 2/23/12* A video of ranked Nautilus gameplay will be up shortly.

I hope you all enjoyed this guide, as its actually my first one! :D I had a good time putting it together, it was definitely a great experience to get to purchase Nautilus on day 1 and mess around with him at a position that everyone expected him to fail at. If anyone has any questions about the guide, feel free to add me in-game, my summoner name is Ryan Egan. Cheers, -Ryan

Comments coming soon!
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