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NOCTURNE BUILD GUIDE: Nocturne Jungle Guide S4 by TheOddOne

by TheOddOne (last updated 9 months ago)

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5
Greater Mark of Attack Speed(+8.5% attack speed)
4
Greater Mark of Armor Penetration(+5.12 armor penetration)
9
Greater Seal of Armor(+12.69 armor)
9
Greater Glyph of Magic Resist(+12.06 magic resist)
3
Greater Quintessence of Attack Damage(+6.75 attack damage)
View Rune Details
Summoner Spells
View Summoner Details

Starting

5

Full Item Build

View Item Details
9
21
0
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 4/4
mastery 3 0/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
9 Offense
mastery 1 2/2
mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 2/2
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 1/3
mastery 4 1/3
mastery 1 3/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
0 Utility
View Mastery Details
Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Umbra Blades
QDuskbringer
WShroud of Darkness
EUnspeakable Horror
RParanoia
View Skill Order Details

Introduction

This champion is a very requested champion to make a guide on, I feel like it's because he is viable at all brackets and his kit is somewhat fun. I also think if anyone wanted to get into jungling, they should Nocturne as their first champion because he teaches the basics and his kit is well balanced. Nocturne has a perfect blend of damage, CC and utility through his ultimate as well as great ganks. His clear speed is above average and his ganks are decent early and his ability to get invaded on isn't that bad so he can fend his own against strong jungles. This all adds up to a champion that is fine at all levels of play. Though I still can't figure out why lower brackets like Hecarim...

Runes

This gives a nice mix of everything, you can honestly interchange any of the marks to AD/ARP/AS as Nocturne is fine with any combination (though all ARP might have slower clears). Seals and glyphs are standard to take some pressure off Nocturne early game (rather than scaling runes, Nocturne only needs help early game I feel) and AD Quints are pretty strong if you're going to have any AD rune.

Masteries

mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 4/4
mastery 3 0/4
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
9 Offense
mastery 1 2/2
mastery 2 0/2
mastery 3 0/2
mastery 4 2/2
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/3
mastery 4 1/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 1/3
mastery 4 1/3
mastery 1 3/3
mastery 2 1/1
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 1/1
mastery 2 3/4
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 2 1/1
21 Defense
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 3 0/1
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/1
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/1
mastery 3 0/3
mastery 4 0/2
mastery 1 0/1
mastery 2 0/3
mastery 2 0/1
0 Utility
If you want to go tankier, I'd suggest removing the double edged sword but if you like damage keep it. I feel like 21 offense Nocturne blows up too fast as Nocturne is more of an auto attacking bruiser rather than a burst assassin since if Nocturne can survive the initial full combo of a champion, it's highly likely Nocturne will finish his opponent afterwards when their spells are all down. These masteries help with that.

Summoner Sets

Smite & Flash
Flash is good for keeping your fear tether on the enemy if they use an escape move or a flash, it's also useful for Nocturne to catch opponents that flash over walls as shadow trail won't help him there. Otherwise it's fairly standard to have flash on most champions as mobility is powerful.

Item Builds

Starting Build(s)
Default Starting Build
5
Dorans blade is ok for a Nocturne start but I dislike it's flexibility because of level 1 invades or harass from enemy laners/enemy jungler. 5 potions allows you to be fairly healthy throughout your route and it makes killing camps easier, also it gives 5 hp per hit on jungle monsters so it's really nice there too.
Final Build(s)
Standard Final Items
I currently use this style of build in solo queue (though ancient golem is probably better for competitive) as if gives nice damage and is fairly tanky. Personally I like getting phage before Randuins and not upgrading it to triforce until after randuins or banshees as I like the phage proc effect. I usually change my yellow trinket to a red trinket later as clearing vision is more valuable than a free ward as wards can be bought easily while ward clearing is limited to just pink wards and red trinkets.
Build Order
The phage after the Lizard helps with chasing targets and gives a little HP boost, you can interchange Banshee's and Randuins if your opponents are stacked in one sort of damage.

Skill Order

Player Level 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18
Umbra Blades
QDuskbringer
WShroud of Darkness
EUnspeakable Horror
RParanoia
Duskbringer is an extremely strong spell for Nocturne, it provides extra mobility, higher damage, is a ranged nuke and will make and break ganks so it must be maxed first as it sets everything up. I like to max Unspeakable Horror 2nd because the duration goes up as you max it and that is very strong later in the game as a target that can't fight back for 2 seconds is very strong. Shroud is a nice skill but it's still useful with just one point for most of the game as it's hard to get two of it off in a fight until the final levels.

Skills

Umbra Blades
This passive gives a bit of sustain for Nocturne early though it doesn't completely negate the damage enough for Nocturne to skip a spirit stone item. This passive is very strong at clearing the jungle due to it's 120% cleaving effect meaning that Nocturne won't even have to auto attack the small monsters at a camp as they'll likely die from the Duskbringer and a couple of Umbra Blade swipes while Nocturne hammers the main monster.
Duskbringer
The main skill Nocturne has aside from his Paranoia, if Nocturne misses this in a teamfight or a gank, it will likely fail or be far less successful. Hitting this skill in a gank or teamfight basically extends the life of Nocturne's bonus damage and movement speed as it'll spread around the field and behind the target Nocturne is chasing, this will allow Nocturne to do massive amounts of damage. If missed, Nocturne's damage drops significantly as he spends more time chasing people due to having lower movespeed and does less damage as a result of missing 55 AD.

Note that this skill can give your position away if targetted at a wall (like Wraiths) and it flies through it and the enemy will be alerted to your location if they see the trail.
Shroud of Darkness
Shroud of Darkness is a fairly strong skill later in the game when it's able to block high damage spells and give a huge attack speed boost. It also has a passive attack speed boost which is fairly nice early game for clearing the jungle. Later in the game this boost becomes extremely strong when it blocks a spell and makes Nocturne strong for late game duels. Often you have to anticipate when the enemy will cast a spell after you ult in for a 1v1 duel because missing the block can make or break a fight as it's possible to block a disable/damage and increase your damage with one move.
Unspeakable Horror
This skill is fairly weak early on due to the randomness of fear in the game, sometimes the target will continue walking the direction they were running in, other times it will greatly help the gank by having them run back. The thing to remember about this skill is that it's slow to activate so it may not get the fear effect if you use it on a target with a jump unless you aren't disable and are already following them towards the target location. Another cool thing you can do is just flash with them to keep it on them and get free autoattacks while they're feared.
Paranoia
This skill is what makes Nocturne special , the ability to gank from afar is very strong and what is often overlooked is it'a ability to reduce everyone's vision to their own (and it's lowered too) meaning fighting in brushes is extremely effective during Paranoia. Sometimes there will be times where you can't use the damage portion of this ultimate as jumping in would be suicide so Nocturne doesn't have to jump in to make use of this ult as often turning it dark can turn a fight.

Champion Matchups

Drmundo
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Similar to the Shyvana matchup, Dr.Mundo has raw power and durability on his side while Nocturne has to rely on his ultimate to get superior ganks off, getting pickoffs with Nocturne ult or turning the field dark at a crucial moment are the keys Nocturne needs to be successful in this matchup.
Elise
Difficulty
Favors You
Strangely enough Elise gets crushed by Nocturne, all her early game pressure is useless if Nocturne uses W on any of her crucial spells as Nocturne will double the attack speed effect and commence slicing Elise to ribbons. If duskbringer hits and Nocturne manages to block a spell, Elise is forced to run as she can't 1v1 a Nocturne with bonus damage/attack speed and a fear that can go past rappel (or force Elise to pointlessly use it to block the fear duration). Nocturne has a easy time with this matchup if he can constantly block Elise's ganks pre 6 and find her to duel her 1v1. The only real time Nocturne could be vulnerable is if Nocturne uses his Q on a jungle camp and Elise catches him doing it. But if Elise hasn't done significant damage pre 6, Nocturne's Paranoia takes over the map and has easier ganks.
Leesin
Difficulty
Favors You
This matchup is similar to the Elise matchup, if Nocturne can block a crucial Lee Sin spell he will be able to duel Lee Sin easily. However Lee Sin's mobility allows him to evade Nocturne's Fear so it's not as easy to kill a Lee Sin even with red buff.
Olaf
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
It's Olaf, basically early game he makes everyone his bitch due to his insane lifesteal and raw power. Nocturne basically can't out damage Olaf almost the entire game due to his passive (1% attack speed per 1% hp missing) combined with his vicious strikes (40-80% attack speed, 9-21% lifesteal + increased healing at lower hp). Most champions can beat Olaf later by having more utility but unfortunately Nocturne has low utility (just a fear and darkness) so he has few chances in the game to be a bigger presence than Olaf. The most ideal time for Nocturne in this matchup is the lane phase after Nocturne hits level 6 as Olaf's ganks aren't as strong as Nocturne's past level 6. Nocturne will have to rely on his ultimate to be more useful and lane phase (when teams aren't grouped) is when it shines.
Shyvana
Difficulty
Favors Enemy
Shyvana is more common as top lane nowadays but her jungle is still extremely powerful, she does an extreme amount of damage for a champion that can simply build tank. Shyvana's sole weakness is her utility is almost zero, her only CC is a knockback which hardly counts. Like with Olaf, Nocturne can do well in this matchup post level 6 in terms of ganking and in teamfights where turning it dark can help turn the fight. Mid game however, Shyvana will likely be soaking up more damage than Nocturne so fights that are in the open aren't advised.
Vi
Difficulty
Favors You
Includes most scaling jungles that are slow early game (amumu,zac etc)

These matchups are actually even, both sides have a strong post level 6 and are average pre 6, Nocturne can counter Vi's engage by counter ganking before Nocturne's ally dies but Vi can do the same with the correct timing. It's one of those matchups where it's hard to say who has an advantage over the other without factoring team compositions.

Jungling

Conclusion

Hope you enjoyed this guide for Nocturne, he is one of my older favorites as he never seems to fall out of the meta completely as his skillset is always useful. Nocturne is a valid pick in all brackets and is fairly fun. Hopefully this guide showed you how to build and play him decently well even if I only scratched the surface of the potential of Nocturne.

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Comments

April 5, 2014 - 12:38 AM #1

I found this really helpful, it helped me play well with Nocturne. Thanks Oddone!

January 13, 2014 - 05:10 AM #2

Really helpful.. Thanks oddone!

December 10, 2013 - 05:14 AM #3

Very nice guide

December 8, 2013 - 05:17 AM #4

I have a question to ask:

What do you think about building Hydra on Nocturne if you are fed? I feel like it synergises really well with his passive, gives him a good bit of lifesteal and damage.

December 5, 2013 - 04:40 PM #5

@Pähkinänsärkijä 1) Tbh I prefer lifesteal as well as it helps alleviate some sustain issues early/mid game but it's all personal preference and based on how you manage your jg route/hp. As you get better you can revert back to AD or switch depending upon preference.

2) Ancient Golem is better if you plan to be farming in the jungle more and to be a frontline tank but as Nocturne you should be doing more ganking early since your ult is so strong combined with your fear and q so Lizard is better for the extra damage output and gold increase from kills/assists/dragon after forcing a lane out.

December 5, 2013 - 03:03 PM #6

Hey, I have two questions for you!

1) What do you think about lifesteal quints? I have noticed that with a somewhat similar setup as yours I am way too low during clearing, we talking under half hp at worst and figured lifesteal quints could alleviate the issue.

2) Isn't Ancient Golem a lot better option, almost regardless of what is happening in the game, golf-efficiency-wise? I have read numerous times of people bashing all jungler items saying it is the only one worth building, what is your take on this?

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