[center][imgext=http://imageshack.us/a/img707/3817/nasusbreak.png][/center] This guide focuses on surviving the laning phase of the game with quickness and health regeneration while passively farming. Nasus can and will turn into a Hyper-Carry if you succeed in doing this. Therefore, it’s important to itemize accordingly. This guide will give you the tools by maximizing your CDR without sacrificing tank. For those not familiar with Nasus: He can best be described as a top lane Off-Tank. The unique part of the Keeper is that he does not scale with attack damage or ability power much at all, but rather farm. Even when built full tank a heavily farmed Nasus will kill and put out more damage than anyone. We could even consider him somewhat of an Assassin. This is because if you are able to locate someone alone on the map, they are as good as dead with little chance of getting away due to Wither and built-in CDR. Needless to say, Nasus is a top notch 1v1 champion. If you are a person that has patience, hope, and a thing for being an unkillable wrecking dog: You need to play Unkillable Nasus!
The skill order follows a pretty simple format. As always with champions, you want to rank up Fury of the Sands first. It's a powerful ultimate and shouldn't be skipped over. Next, we want to level our Siphoning Strike 2nd to lower the cool down. This is not only to reach a higher stack, but also put out sustained damage in fights. After that, Wither is our next major ability because it protects Nasus in lane and gives him an opportunity to trade damage. This ability is widely considered to be the best slow in League of Legends so don't underestimate it. Finally, the last ability we can level is Spirit Fire. Aside from the strength of our other abilities, it makes sense to level it last because it's mostly useful for team-fights. It provides a wide AOE armor shred that can be a significant difference in each fight.
Izyze decided to feature me in one of his awesome tutorial videos. Special thanks to him for all his hard work putting this together. If you enjoy this one feel free to check out his other videos and subscribe! [center][youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t39Zp5i8drc[/youtube][/center]
I feel Nasus has more laning options than others do, but there's no question that he should be picked with discretion. This is because Nasus has a fragile early game and it can be exploited if you aren't careful. If you aren't sure how a lane against a champion may go, keep these things in mind. Generally speaking, Nasus prefers a few things in his lane enemies: 1. Melee (To be in range of his attacks/ultimate and have no ranged harass) 2. Mana (Limits the amount of harass that can be given to Nasus) 3. Auto Attacks (Nasus is a direct counter to AA champions with [imgsmall=skills/nasus/w.png]) It's my opinion that Nasus should always be selected if you have a favorable lane matchup to farm in no matter the team compositions. This is because a farmed Nasus can rip through and shut down any enemy ADC in team fights. This is significant because that is the source of most of a team's damage. Almost every team has to have an ADC, and nothing is more frustrating for them than to sit there not putting out damage. Having said that, it does help when both teams contain certain team compositions that can help reduce the effect of Nasus main weakness. The important words here are : Crowd Control. Nasus needs all the crowd control and initiation he can get from his team, and the least amount from the enemy team. This is because Nasus can be kited hard in team fights if no one can be locked down. If at all possible, having champions like Amumu in Nasus' team will greatly enhance his ability to kill. When these things come togethor, you'll notice Nasus has \"god-like\" games because his ability kit is made for carrying late. Simply put, Nasus is THE counter to all attack damage carries and high HP bruisers.
[highlight]Pro's [/highlight] [.]Durable [.]High Damage [.]Fast Base Speed [.]Top 1v1 Skill Set [.]Anti-Carry Due To Wither [.]Strong Pusher [highlight]Con's[/highlight] [.]No Dash Escape [.]Lacks Damage w/o Farm [.]Only 1 Single Target CC [.]Kiteable in Team Fights
Before we talk about the game itself it's important you learn a key Nasus skill: Lane Control. Controlling the lane is one of the most important skills you can have as a League of Legends player. This is because it can have a profound impact on a champions scaling, and no other champion is this more important for than Nasus. While he does scale extremely well, starting off is not always straight forward for Nasus players because of his initial low damage compared to other champions. If you're thinking how can I win a lane with no damage? Rest assured it's very possible and hard to stop Nasus when he is played well. So how does Nasus win a lane without damage? Simple, he abuses his starting lifesteal via Soul Eater endlessly to maintain the lane and farm his Q-damage. It is hands down one of the best passives in the game and is the universal key to Nasus being able to lane effectively. This passive can be utilized because of the way minions serve Nasus during lane. If it weren't for these three facts Nasus would not be able to lane at all. 1. They allow for self sustainment via passive. 2. They damage opposing champions that try to stop you. 3. They hold lane position. In addition to his passive, lane positioning and freezing are also important to understand. For someone with no dash or escape, being able to farm at or close to turret is the best position you can be in as a Nasus player. This is because Nasus has a couple of defensive maneuvers with his Wither and Fury of the Sands that make him a good defender. Since the tower has good early game damage, it alleviates Nasus main weakness and forces enemies to think twice about diving for a kill. Therefore, our goals are to make farming at tower a reality when possible. How do we do that? Unfortunately for enemies, harass given to Nasus usually results in the lane pushing to Nasus side of the map. Since harass is almost guaranteed in order to try and stop Nasus from farming, this situation tends to happen a good bit. It is due to the game mechanics of allied minions attacking enemy champions when they either harass or are out of lane position on Nasus' minion wave side. This in turn makes enemy minions stop taking damage and push the wave. It can also be due to abilities that have area of effect damage, such as Darius' Decimate. Champions with this type of damage usually fair worse against Nasus for this reason. Once the minions are headed toward Nasus' turret it's advisable to try and tank the damage just outside of turret range as much as possible without endangering yourself. This is easier to do as the lane progresses but can be virtually impossible very early on. Either way, as long as Nasus is under turret protection he has a high chance of success. [center][imgext=http://imageshack.us/a/img560/9828/lanecontrolmod.png][/center] There are many enemies that are aware of this Nasus tactic and will try their best to avoid this situation. Sometimes they will even intentionally miss multiple CS just to ensure the wave comes away from Nasus side in order to get camped by the jungler. This is obviously both good and bad for Nasus. Under ideal situations you either have a ward available, can farm nearby jungle monsters, or are in need of returning to base anyway. There are even times the jungler insists on camping top and pinking wards you may put down. Let your team know this is happening and farm/gank elsewhere the best you can until the wave arrives back at tower range. It is generally not advisable to call your own jungler for a 2v2 fight at top lane. Nasus will most likely lose any confrontation early on. Also, you may be wondering how you're supposed to farm under turret against champions with ranged poke, such as Jayce or Vladimir. While these type of champions do present Nasus with a unique problem, you shouldn't fear laning against them. Nasus is the best anti-poke champion in the game. He excels at shrugging off small to medium damage harass. Even if substantial poke can successfully push Nasus out of the lane, that doesn't mean he wasn't able to farm a good bit before having to go back to base. This is why Nasus players like to take [imgsmall=summoners/teleport.png]. They can go back to base, heal, buy more armor, and then force the enemy to whittle him down once again. This is not an easy task for opposing champions to do, especially if they are mana users themselves. So basically, Nasus gets to a point where he has such a large amount of armor, health, and sustain that he can not be forced from lane at all. In addition he also becomes near ungankable with the amount of defenses he is acquiring. This is the ultimate farming conditions for Nasus to be in as he has essentially won all lane control away from his enemies.
I can't stress this enough: You have to farm constantly with Siphoning Strike. Do not go for kills. Do not gank other lanes. Do not play aggressive. Do not do anything else. There are only two exceptions to this rule. 1. Your jungler is ganking for you. 2. Your team is challenging dragon and absolutely needs you to teleport down. Generally, if things are going well and you are farming contently you DO NOT want ganks in your lane. This is for multiple reasons. Having a gank means I spend time trying to do something else other than farm. It pushes the lane. It takes away from Nasus' very limited mana pool early on. And also, Nasus strength does not come from getting kills. While kills certainly help, getting them is not top priority like it might be for other lanes. All of this being said, ganking for Nasus can be a guaranteed kill depending on who is top, and who is jungling. What I mean by this is: Nasus' wither combined with a Red buff gank or Ultimate is incredibly strong. However, it helps considerably to have a jungler that doesn't have to depend on Nasus for damage(not farmed yet). A good example of this would be Fiddlesticks, or Master Yi. If things are not going well in the lane, chances are good that an unconventional top is what you're dealing with and will need a gank. An example of this would be Urgot or Cassiopeia. While these are hard to lane against early, they are easily killed with ganks due to being squishy and having limited escape abilities. Call for Jungle support constantly if this happens and you will both be fed. One thing to keep in mind when laning is that if the lane becomes heavily pushed, go ahead and farm the top Golems or small monsters at blue. Maybe even take blue if the team agrees to it. Not only does this let you get farm more safely, it keeps the jungler from seeing you pushed and making his way top. The less time that the lane is pushed with you over extended the better. Regenerating Nasus health is the key to his laning. One thing that helps with this is double hitting. Nasus can do this because Siphoning Strike resets his auto-attack. If you have health missing and need to hit a minion close to the enemy, double hitting him will reduce the overall harassment given to you. Also, keep an eye open for minions that have drifted close to you away from the enemy. Auto attacking this minion as much as possible before the enemy comes will help your sustainment. If the enemy is bent on attacking you with area of effect abilities such as Garen's spin, make him push the wave by always walking through or at least near the creeps. A pushed lane is Nasus' best friend because he can farm under tower better than most. Remember that the melee creeps take two tower hits and can be SS. The ranged after 1 tower hit. And of course if SS is on cool down feel free to auto-attack the ones near death. Do not concern yourself much about your enemies creep score in the early game. There isn't much you can do to deny them, but it also doesn't really matter. Why? Because Nasus scales far and away harder than any other champion. Give Nasus just 60% of another champions farm and he will likely destroy them. There are some champions that will push as hard as possible and try to take your turret to start roaming early. When this happens it's important that you try to protect it while farming under it. Don't let an enemy just hammer it down in 5 minutes if they are pushing hard, such as Singed. Wither them if mana is plentiful, and attack them under the turret for free hits. If you do this enough they will become very susceptible to ganks and back off. In the event the turret becomes so low that the enemy can knock it down with just a few hits while your defenses are still low, it can no longer provide adequate protection for Nasus. In this situation it is likely better that you allow them to take it and continue farming close to the next turret.
Welcome to the part of the game where Nasus can be on the offensive. That's correct, no more passive play. It may take some games to get a feel for when this part begins because it's not always the same. However, make no mistake this is Nasus' time to shine! You will notice that you can start pressuring your lane out, and likely take their tower. There are times, though, that if I'm doing well I will leave the tower standing a little longer to bring them back top for another kill. During this phase it's important to look for opportunities to help your team succeed. After all, you've put the pressure on them early game so why not return the favor. Do not concern yourself as much with last hitting everything with Siphoning Strike. It's still important that you gain damage on it throughout the game, but more important that you put pressure on the enemy team with Nasus' wonderful pushing abilities and be with your team to secure objectives. Also, be mindful of your build during this time of the game because you will be needing to counter more than just your lane now. Feel free to add magic resist or armor if none has been built yet, and look to add health behind already purchased armor you may have. In addition, be looking for ways to support your team. If they are being hit hard with magic damage, rush a [imgsmall=items/runic-bulwark.png] to soften the effect of it.
All that farming is done, now for some team fights. This is where many Nasus players will literally see a reversal of the game. The team may be dramatically behind in kills when you show up to help. But woe is the enemy at this point because you're ready to bring the pain. Do not initiate unless you catch someone well out of position and Wither them for your team. Once a fight has commenced, ALWAYS seek out the carry and wither them. You don't have to necessarily catch and hit them if you are also being CC'd because they are useless anyway. But it's important that you take any opportunity to do so if it presents itself. They will probably die in 2 or 3 shots of a well farmed SS. If you're finding it hard to reach the carry just be sure you're in the thick of everything with your Ult on, lay down the Spirit Fire on everyone and SS the nearest target or whoever is targeting your own carry. If you find that your Wither is off cooldown, locate the carry again immediately and throw it on them. If they are dead or out of the fight, wonderful, choose another target that is auto-attack based and put it on them instead. One thing to keep in mind is to not have tunnel vision and chase the carry out of the fight while your team is being destroyed. Not only does this waste your Ult damage, but it wastes SS damage you could put out for your team. I am guilty of this sometimes and itâ€™s easy to to do if you're not careful. If your team has a successful fight and has an opportunity to push towers, do not hesitate to join them. Nasus Q-farm also damages towers making him one of the best pushers in the game. He can literally solo a tower within seconds. [center][imgext=http://imageshack.us/a/img685/9562/riotk9nasus2.jpg][/center]
This part of the game can overwhelm some champions whose scaling have fallen off completely. Luckily, that isn't Nasus since he can scale indefinately. It's my firm belief that while you may be one of the strongest champions on the map, especially 1v1, this time of the game is dominated solely by carries and their ability to shred the enemy team due to penetration. This is a concern for you because we spent good amounts of gold piling up that armor and health. With the amount of resistances we have built, carries are virtually the only ones with enough damage to bring you down. Therefore, it is to your advantage that your team be able to kill them as quickly as possible. Another thing to note: We may no longer be able to lean on Wither to shut the carry down because they probably have built a Mercurial Scimitar. Due to this problem it is your hope that either you have an assassin that can take them out, or someone with enough crowd control to lock them down. Remember, Nasus is one of the most capable champions you can have late game at the bruiser position. If you have made it this far, your team is fortunate to have someone like you available. Make sure your presence is known, and be confident that you can lead them to victory if given the opportunity. Part of playing Nasus is enjoying how much power you have at this time in the game, so do it.
How much farm do you need? As a general rule of thumb, I like to have +200 and my [imgsmall=items/sheen.png] before becoming aggressive in the lane. At this point it's possible to force many opponents out of the lane by yourself. For an average lane, having this at 20min is good. If you by chance have an awesome lane and end up with close to +400 by this point then you're primed for a God-like late game. With this amount of farm you can rest assured the enemy will lose any 1v1. Once your at this farm level proceed to push your opponent out, take his tower, and join your team for fights. Don't be alarmed if your behind these farm levels. Some enemies are very capable of zoning Nasus and it will happen to you eventually. Either ask for ganks to remedy the problem, or just get whatever farm you can and heal back up at base for another round. Under no circumstance should you contest the enemy and give up kills trying to farm. If they happen to take your turret and you are behind in farm, just continue to lane relatively close to your next turret. The enemy will be forced to over extend trying to stop you setting up kills for the team. If you're behind, it's important that the team you're on try to hold out on team fights while you continue to farm an extra 5-10 minutes to catch up. This is the sacrifice of losing the lane unfortunately.
[highlight]Optional Summoner Spells[/highlight] [imgsmall=summoners/exhaust.png] This is a good ability that I don't use on Nasus. This doesn't enhance his laning very well, and considering our Wither(which does the same thing but better) is up almost immediately after it wears off would make this redundant. [imgsmall=summoners/smite.png] This is a jungling spell to ensure you get neutral buffs. This is optional because it is viable to jungle with Nasus. Although you may not always use it to secure jungle objectives because of farming potential, it is still needed for major buffs such as baren and dragon. [highlight]Not Recommended Summoner Spells[/highlight] [imgsmall=summoners/heal.png] is an ability that has taken some serious nerfs when considering solo lanes using it. I can no longer justify taking it, even though it was once a wonderful baiting, and defensive tool. I feel it is now reserved for supports since the ability now gives allies 100% of the total heal. [imgsmall=summoners/ignite.png] Ok, let me just point out that if you are playing Nasus to kill early game, you are doing it wrong. This spell is essentially made for snowball champions that need kills to be relevant late game. This is not Nasus. He does not need kills to be relevant, and only needs to survive and farm through the laning phase of the game. In no way does this help you achieve that goal. Not recommended. [imgsmall=summoners/revive.png] The idea is to not die. I don't currently consider this a viable summoner spell outside of dominion, and taking it will make your team think you are trolling. [imgsmall=summoners/cleanse.png] Certainly a strong spell on some champions that are hindered by ignite like Nasus. But as nice as it is to have, it's not recommended because other spells are stronger on Nasus. If I were to take it, it would have to be against a heavy crowd control team, and be paired with Ghost. [imgsmall=summoners/clairvoyance.png] You need survival spells, not team support spells. Do not take this. [imgsmall=summoners/barrier.png] Decent defensive spell with good sheilding. My gripe is that it only lasts for 2 seconds. If I'm concerned with being dived I'll either ward properly, or not let myself get low enough to need this by using teleport to lane. Also, Nasus has good anti-dive tools built into his kit via ultimate and Wither.
Here is a closer look at each item and why Nasus works well with it. [.][imgsmall=items/mercurys-treads.png] These are the best source of Tenacity for Nasus, and also increases his tankiness as well. [.][imgsmall=items/frozen-fist.png] This item provides a slow to help with kiting, solid AOE damage, much needed cool down reduction, and a decent amount of armor for tanking damage up close. [.][imgsmall=items/runic-bulwark.png] Nasus needs to be very tanky in order to do his job well, and the highest magic resist item in the game does that for him and his team. This is a solid item that should always be purchased by someone, and who better than Nasus who is tanky enough to stay alive with it? [.][imgsmall=items/warmogs-armor.png] This item enhances your ability to survive by increasing your effective health. Effective health is considered the amount of health that a champion has plus 1% per unit of defense as extra health due to damage reduction. In other words, effective health is the amount of damage the enemy needs to kill the champion. Suppose a champion has 2000HP and 100 armor. They would have a 50% physical damage reduction. Therefore, it would actually take 4000 damage to kill them. For a better understanding you can use this formula: [center]Physical Effective Health = Max Health Ã— (1 + (Armor / 100))[/center] [.][imgsmall=items/randuins-omen.png] This provides good armor and health, as well as a supplemental attack speed slow. If the carry is going to target you down first, atleast they won't be doing it as fast. It also keeps them from kiting you as hard with the built-in movement slow. The wardens mail it is built from is easy to attain early, making this item a logical upgrade. [.][imgsmall=items/spirit-visage.png] Much like the Iceborn Gauntlet, this item feels like it was made for Nasus. It has everything we want in an MR item, and even gives Nasus additional lifesteal. This is a must buy, especially in AP lanes like Vladimir and Rumble. Being flexible in Nasus' build is important, especially early game where he can be denied. You won't always have enough gold for [imgsmall=items/glacial-shroud.png], or perhaps even want it if you're struggling in lane. Feel free to build [imgsmall=items/chain-vest.png], [imgsmall=items/cloth-armor.png], or [imgsmall=items/negatron-cloak.png] as needed. [imgsmall=items/sheen.png] and [imgsmall=items/glacial-shroud.png] are luxury items and should be treated as such. One thing to keep in mind when looking at tank items is the game armor mechanics. Stacking armor is never viable much beyond 200. Therefore, it's wise to invest in some health items. Since there are plenty of both in the build you may try tinkering around with the last item slots. There are multiple viable options for the last couple slots and really it rests on how the game is going and what the team needs are. Most of the time I feel like Nasus needs more tank items to absorb the punishment he has to endure late game and I listed our best options in the build. Which one to choose is a matter of what type of damage you are taking. If damage isn't a problem and the enemy team is being locked down well, go ahead and build a [imgsmall=items/ravenous-hydra.png] or [imgsmall=items/blade-of-the-ruined-king.png]. Both of these items give Nasus the ability to carry games especially when he has the advantage. Ravenous Hydra in particular is a strong 5th or 6th item, especially against multiple melee enemies. If you can forego the purchasing of one tank item, this would replace it. Obviously, there are some things to keep in mind here. You may not want this if your team is behind, you are the main tank, or your other items have not been purchased. This item excels at teamfights and further enhances Nasus ability to put out sustained damage and survive. Do not purchase this in laning phase, as you will push the lane and miss Q-farm. Lastly, the item active resets your auto-attack giving you a free triple hit. [highlight][center]Other Viable Defensive Items[/center][/highlight] [center][img=items/banshees-veil.png][img=items/frozen-heart.png][img=items/guardian-angel.png][img=items/locket-of-the-iron-solari.png][img=items/sunfire-cape.png][img=items/thornmail.png][img=items/ruby-sightstone.png][img=items/rylais-crystal-scepter.png][img=items/spirit-of-the-ancient-golem.png][img=items/frozen-mallet.png][/center] [highlight][center]Other Viable Offensive Items[/center][/highlight] [center][img=items/maw-of-malmortius.png][img=items/the-bloodthirster.png][img=items/trinity-force.png][img=items/mercurial-scimitar.png][img=items/blade-of-the-ruined-king.png][/center]
Nasus is countered by teams that are overly aggressive early game. This can include in his lane, or as a whole taking objectives. Since Nasus doesn't have much to offer, good teams take advantage of this to gain a heavy lead. It is noticeable when facing good opponents that Nasus tends to get his lane camped by the jungler, albeit not as much in Season 3. This can be a good thing or a bad thing for Nasus' team depending on how he handles it. If he can escape the gank on his lane, the minion wave will usually make its way back to Nasus side where he wants it. In addition to that, all of this pressure Nasus inherits is taken away from the rest of his team. However, if the ganks are successful and Nasus feeds, the results can be disastrous for him if the game is ended quickly. This is an important thing to note because Nasus WILL come back from being camped if given the chance. It doesn't really matter if he dies 1 time or 3 times, he will eventually overtake his top lane opponent in power. Do not allow Nasus to free farm, and if he chooses to do so, take map objectives with the team. Also, don't allow yourself to be led by the masses that say Nasus needs 30+ minutes of farming or he's worthless. This is completely false. Nasus only needs to farm 10-15 minutes to start becoming a force of his own. Be aware of this, and coordinate with your team to take him down. [center][imgext=http://imageshack.us/a/img853/5851/newpicture1m.png][/center]
The enigmatic creature known as Nasus came to the League from a faraway world, and served as part of a vast and learned desert empire. There he was a respected and enlightened individual, having been made the Keeper of the Great Library. However, he was also part of a race of animalistic creatures that served as the rulers and protectors of the people. Unfortunately, there were others of his kind that believed they were more than protectors. They were under the egotistical delusion that they had ascended to become gods. War on Nasus's world was never more than a breath away, as these deluded others sought to enslave the people and establish a totalitarian sovereignty. In the midst of a heated battle, just as Nasus was about to slay his treacherous brother Renekton, he was pulled through the cosmos to a summoning circle in Runeterra. At first angered that he had been taken just as he was about to cripple the enemies of his people, Nasus' advanced intellect won out when he heard the pleas for mercy from the summoners. He learned that Runeterra was also filled with its own brand of injustice. This danger was no less threatening than what he had fought against at home, and champions were needed to protect the people of this world. Heeding the call, Nasus chose to take his place in the League of Legends, knowing that his brothers and sisters would carry on the fight back home. These days, he is the Curator of the Sands, feeling most at home in the crumbling ruins of the Shurima Desert. However, recent disturbing news has reached the Keeper's ears - rumors that perhaps his brother had not in fact been left behind. If this were the case, the destruction of Renekton would quickly become Nasus' main priority, before this world too faces the threats of his brother's forked-tongue and endless ambition. [highlight][center]\"The Curator of the Sands, though contemplative, is not to be trifled with.\" [/center][/highlight] [center][imgext=http://imageshack.us/a/img802/3494/nasusposter.jpg][/center]
[highlight][center]THANK YOU![/center][/highlight] Thank you all for reading, and I sincerely hope this guide has been a pleasure. I will be adding more content and matchups periodically to keep the guide updated. I love feedback and welcome your questions on anything you see here. [center][imgext=http://imageshack.com/a/img593/429/h9jm.png][/center]