Nunu Build Guide

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Nearly Universal Newbie U...something (Mage-Nunu)

written by WATFalCone

Nunu Build

Table of Contents

  • Introduction

    Hands down, Nunu is one of those characters that most veteran League of Legends players tell you to buy when you're just starting out. This is entirely true and should be considered objective fact (He's 450 IP, why wouldn't you?). Nunu's sheer simplicity alone makes him one of the best champions for people who are new to the genre (for lack of a better word for LoL/HoN/DotA/etc.) He can be built as a tank, a caster, and can be played as a fairly decent jungler.With the damage output and survivability his skill deliver, you can be sure to be of great use to your team in almost any situation that isn't horribly stacked against you.

    This guide will be a rundown for a basic mage-nunu build. Of course, nothing in a guide should be considered static. If you don't get Thornmail because I didn't mention it in here when their entire team is physical auto-attackers, then your eventual defeat is entirely your fault, not mine, you derp.

    I'm going to start off with some general rules of Nunu's abilities. They're usually self-explanatory, but for the uninitiated, it's best to know sooner rather than later.

  • Abilities

    Visionary's ability to give you free spells is amazing. I never take advantage of it because I'm a wimp and pack clarity, but when you're in a tight spot and have a chance to hit some of the enemy minions, you should take advantage of it. It's seriously helpful when you're laning.

    Consume is what makes Nunu disgustingly awesome. During laning, eating creeps when damaged will essentially reset any progress your harassers have made against you, and when it comes down to the wire, it's generally best to save this for when you're actually getting hurt so you can turn around and heal, instead of simply getting chased and killed. Consume heal includes 100% of your Ability Power, so it's rad if you've packed up enough of it.

    -Use this when you're damaged early game
    -Use this to heal during fighting if you've been hurt
    -Use this to get some easy farms too. One-hitting creeps for some cash rocks
    -Eat Heimerdinger's turrets, and laugh at him. Gobble up Teemo's mushrooms or Shaco's jack-in-the-boxes (before they stealth or with oracles) and do your team a favour.

    -DO NOT use consume for general farming. You might need it soon and at that point it might really count
    -DO NOT run out from safety into your lane opponents face first just to consume.
    -DO NOT eat creeps that are low on health if you're not in dire need of health.
    -DO NOT eat creeps that are low period. (This message was brought to you by every Nasus and Veigar player ever)

    Blood Boil
    I personally don't grab blood boil early game, most of the time I wish I did, but I'm the kind of loser who min/maxes my damage/heal. Always use Blood Boil on an ally whenever possible, even if it's a creep, since there's no downside to not using it on yourself. The cooldown for Blood Boil is somewhere around its actual duration, so you can keep it up at all times if you really want to.

    -Drop this on an auto-attacker during teamfights or when pushing towers.
    -Use this to attempt to help your allies escape from dangerous situations.
    -Cast blood boil on the creep in front of a wave and watch it become an epic martyr.

    -DO NOT not use blood boil when you have it. It's just stingy and rude.
    -DO NOT cast Blood boil on a mage or a support champion when pushing towers if there's an auto-attacker around. They'll get more mileage out of it.

    Ice Blast
    Your main source of damage. Trust me, it is, your attack is terrible, and your ult is your only other damaging skill, and that can't be spammed as much as Ice Blast. It has a substantial slow effect, and can be used in a variety of situations to your benefit. Ice Blast's damage scales 100% with your AP. Later in the game it becomes a single-target nuke against squishy enemies, but its range can potentially leave you in dangerous spots.

    -Farming when no enemy champions are (suspected to be) around.
    -Chases of any kind: Slow your opponents while you and a buddy are after them, or when you or a buddy are being chased.

    -DON'T Use Ice Blast whenever it's up to hit creeps when it's not important
    -DON'T run into range of the enemy if it means you will most likely end up dead.
    -DON'T spam Ice Blast early game, you probably don't have the mana for it.

    Absolute Zero
    This is quite possibly the highest potential damage spell in the game. Read the description, I don't need to say much else about it besides some helpful tips.



    -Casting this from a bush. Hostile cannot see the circle if they can't see you.
    -Using this in conjunction with a mass-CC such as Pulverize, Idol of Durand, Curse of the Sad Mummy will allow for the most damage on the most people.
    -Late-Game creep farming. (We're talkin' about huge HUGE minion waves)
    -Canceling the ult when enemies are about to leave the circle. It's no good blowing up if you're not hitting anyone.

    -DON'T Just run in there and start casting this. You'll get focused and killed or disabled and neutered.
    -DON'T cast this out in the open without the help of teammates or a Banshee's Veil
    -DON'T just stand there when enemy champions are about to leave the circle before it blows up. Cancel the ult. It deals a portion of the damage based on how long you've been channeling it. I can't stress this enough.

  • Masteries + Runes + Summoner Spells

    External Image

    Of course, if you're less than level 30, you can't get all of these fine and delicious mastery points. I'd like to strongly urge you to prioritize getting the EXP mastery in the Utility tree. Also getting the proper summoner skill masteries helps, of course. No need to pack the improved ghost while having no ghost, right?

    If you're less than level 20, don't buy runes. Ever.

    9 x Greater Mark of Insight - Magic pen is amazing.
    9 x WHATEVER YOU FEEL LIKE, I USE Greater Seal of Evasion, BUT THAT'S JUST ME
    9 x Either Greater Glyph of Replenishment, Greater Glyph of Clarity, Greater Glyph of Insight or Greater Glyph of Celerity

    Summoner Spells:
    In any situation, I usually pack
    and either or .

    Almost anything that isn't Revive, [spell_text=Rally] or Smite(when you're not jungling) should serve you fine.

  • Skilling Order + Items

    Skilling Order:

    Prioritizing Heal+Damage:

    -You may want to get Blood Boil at Level 4, but I usually don't unless it's somehow key.

    -If your team is going for an early gank or something, get Ice Blast first.

    My usual item build:

    You can get some extra life out of this, and it adds on to your Ice Blast's slow, I might swap the Will of the Ancients out for this, but I prefer blowing up and going from half to full life.

    Amazing replacement for any of the last four items. The passive is what makes it worth grabbing. Having a boatload of Ability Power, Ice Blast an enemy, and then punching them in the butt, meaning your auto-attack will also scale 100% with your AP. It's a blast.

    Oh, look. They're all packing a bunch of Magic Resist.

    All risks involved with this item apply, I usually avoid the Smugstealer anyway, even if I'm doing amazingly well.

    Oh, thank god. We're finally loaded in. Open that store and get yourself:


    and get out there. After farming up a good 1275+ gold, go home.


    Then try to get the core items of this build:

    , or (rarely)
    Getting Banshee's is essential. It helps ensure that you have the most control over when your ultimate detonates.


    Honestly, the whole build is an Ability Power stack. It's usually fairly simple to make a working Nunu build due to his amazing AP Scaling.

  • Playing Dat Nunu

    Early Laning(Levels 1~5):
    At the very beginning, you're going to want to hang back until you have both Consume and Ice Blast. Taking unnecessary damage and having to over-use your heal will result in less mana-efficiency through the early stages of the game. Do not put yourself at the slightest bit of risk needlessly without your Q-skill ready. Harass enemy champions when you can with Ice Blast, and try to get some punches on the enemy creeps to use Visionary to get some free casts.

    Late Laning(Levels 6~10):
    Be ready to dish out some damage the second you and your possible (Did I mention you can solo-lane with this? Practice first) lane-mate hit level 6. Hopefully you've harassed your lane-opponents down a bit, and you might have some scratches on you, as well. The ideal place to be is going to be in your lane's brush. Try to get into a situation where the enemy will chase you into a bush and use Absolute Zero. The ideal situation would have you and your buddy being at ~50% health, and playing dangerously to attempt to persuade your enemy to chase you into some bushes. You'd rush their creeps and eat one if you're low enough, of course, then proceed to bush-cast your ultimate for massive damage.

    Team Fighting(levels 10~18):
    Running from lane-to-lane and chasing after pushing hostiles is Nunu's weak point. Try to keep your farming going so you can grab those high-yield AP items. The best places to fight when you have a bunch of AP is near bushes for Absolute Zero and near enemy minions for Consume. Most people will try to convince you to initiate a teamfight, and yes, you can, just not with your ultimate. Casting Absolute Zero when the enemy has committed to a fight can easily turn the tables in your teams favour if you manage to get the full ultimate's damage on as many enemy champions as possible. Be wary of enemy disables, though. That Banshee's Veil is only good for one enemy spell.

    Towers and Super-Late Game:
    -Blood Boil the highest-damaging allied unit whenever you find yourself damaging a tower, it'll help.

    -Don't be afraid to be the hero and attempt to pull hostile champions off of fleeing teammates if you get caught while pushing down towers.

    -Never stop ulting.

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Submitted by WATFalCone

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