LoL: Nilah - The Best ADC That No One Plays | RiftFeed

LoL: Nilah - The Best ADC That No One Plays

Champions 31-03-2024 20:00

Nilah consistently has one of the better win rates in the bot lane while her play rate is very low. But how can a champion be this good and yet so underplayed?

062222 08 Nilah Splash
Is Nilah an ADC or just something else? | © Riot Games

There are a few different classes in League of Legends. There are Marksman, Fighters, and Assassins to name a few. Different Champions from the same class usually have a similar playstyle or similar qualities that make it relatively intuitive to swap champions. 

Now what happens when there is an ADC that plays different to any other and actually more like a Fighter? Well, Nilah is a character like that, and you can already see that it isn't really popular. 

Now, bot lane is no stranger to gimmicky champions. Aphelios exists and there is also Samira which is a melee/ranged hybrid, but Nilah is actually the first champion in the bot lane that is exclusively melee. No, I'm not counting you Yasuo mains or the Dinosaurs that played the old Mordekaiser bot lane.

What Is Holding Nilah Back From Being Popular?

Star Guaridan Nilah Splash
She is unpopular and doesn't have a lot of skins. | © Riot Games

It's actually quite a good idea to compare Nilah to Samira because they both care very heavily around their own support. 

Obviously there are some ADC's that have really good synergies with certain supports like for example Lucian and Nami, but in most cases any ADC works with any other Support. The more important thing in the mind of an ADC is the enemy support as they will do their best to keep you down all game.

Nilah and Samira don't work like that, as they actually care a lot about their own support. While Samira would love an engage support, her ranged capabilities allow her to still play the game even with a Soraka. 

As Nilah is completely melee, she has got a really neat passive from Riot Games. First she gets extra XP for her and her closest ally if she last hits minions, but she also she gains bonus healing and shielding while also giving the same to the closest ally. 

This passive works really well for her as she is prone to getting zoned of minions. While this is all very creative, it is something completely new that no other ADC shares with her. This makes her incredibly hard to pick up and learn, as you basically have to learn the champion from scratch instead of taking experiences from other marksman into account.

Coven nilah
Doyou play Nilah? | © Riot Games

Nilah scales incredibly well into the late game as her cooldowns get very low since she is a melee champion. They cost next to nothing and scale of crit chance, which she has most of in the later stages of the game. 

This makes her incredibly strong, but also means that she has a terrible laning phase where she is heavily reliant on her support. She is a melee like Yasuo, Yone and Tryndamere but doesn't get crit rate for free like they do. If Nilah doesn't have a support that can provide heals and shields, she practically does not have a passive.

Nilah unfortunately is caught in a devious cycle. Only a few know how to pilot the champion efficiently and even less know how to play with it which makes her look really weak in some games. And because she looks weak in these games, she is unpopular. And because she is unpopular, nobody knows how to play with her. 

Can Riot fix this? Probably not. Buffing Nilah would be criminal as she is already an incredibly strong 1vs9 character in the late game and doesn't make her any more intuitive. 

Players that are good on her and play with the right supports can easily reach up to 60% win rate with the champion, while this can plummet down to 45% without a healing support. 

She is Riot's attempt to bring more top laners into the ADC position, as she plays closely like a Fighter. This has previously worked on Pyke as many assassin players have since then played the champion on support. Unfortunately, it didn't work for Nilah.

What do you think of Nilah? Is she worth to learn?

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Erik Feldengut

Meet Erik, a writer on the Riftfeed content team, specializing in League of Legends and Gaming.

His daily routine revolves around gaming and watching others play, with a side gig at TU Ilmenau studying 'Applied Media and Communication Sciences'...