Initially, Nemesis was designed to be a warrior. Even though she is now an Auto Attacking monster, her kit still shows sign of her bruiser days. With this in mind, she can be utilized with glass cannon and tanky backlines builds alike.
And as always, these are just suggestions, what you build is at your discretion.
Now obviously, I understand that there are a plethora of new starter items added to the game, and you can experiment with all of them and their glorious starters. However, I will only be going over the designated Jungle starters and the optimal upgrade for Nemesis
Bumba's Dagger -> Bumba's Hammer
The most standard of the three, Bumba's Dagger
provides a straight +50 health and +50 mana upon purchase. Also, your basics deal +20 true damage, and your abilities deal an extra 30% damage, both effects being only applicable to jungle monsters. Once you have defeated a jungle monster, you are healed equal to 10% of that monster's health, as well as regenerate 25 mana.
You would buy this item for the most efficient jungle clear and sustain, letting you clear faster and safer, but doesn't provide anything outside of farming. Faster farming means faster xp and gold gain, which leads to leveling faster, buying items faster, becoming impactful faster. That being said, this item's impact is only in the jungle, and it does its job perfectly.
At level 20, you can upgrade to Bumba's Hammer
, which provides +300 health, +200 mana, +10% penetration (all your damage ignores 10% of the opponent's protections), and +20% cooldown reduction on your abilities. Also, when you activate an ability, your next basic attack deals an extra 80 true damage, and once you do hit an enemy with said empowered attack, all of your current ability cooldowns are decreased by 1 second and you are healed for 5% of your maximum health.
Where the starter lacked an outside-of-the-jungle presence, this upgrade makes up for it tremendously. Not only does the cooldown reduction on this item pair very well with the 1-second reduction, but the passive has no limit to it. Therefore, you can cast an ability, get the basic attack damage out, which gives you the heal and cooldown reduction, then repeat it instantly with another ability. It also doesn't specify the enemy, so you can proc this on jungle camps, minions, enemy gods, and even Fire Giant and Gold Fury. It works especially well with Nemesis
, as the passive for Bumba's Hammer
won't take effect until the shield disappears. In a real game, you will most likely pop the shield to either save your life or reset your auto-attack chain, meaning that the extra damage can apply once the shield is destroyed from damage, or 2 seconds after you use it. The only thing stopping you from using it to its fullest is your ability to stay alive and actually hit basic attacks.
If going this starter, a burst build with power and pen would suit you best.
Manikin Scepter -> Manikin Hidden Blade
Listed as the aggressive starter item, Manikin Scepter
provides +10 basic attack damage and +10 physical protection upon purchase. On top of that, this item gives your basic attacks a burn effect. Enemies hit take 12 physical damage over 2 seconds (3 physical damage every .5 seconds), and have their attack speed reduced by 3.5%. This can stack up to 4 times, meaning a maximum of 48 physical damage over 2 seconds (12 physical damage every .5 seconds) and 14% attack speed reduction. Jungle monsters take 4x the damage, meaning a base of 48 physical damage over 2 seconds (12 physical damage every .5 seconds) that can stack to become 192 physical damage over 2 seconds (48 physical damage every .5 seconds). All damage listed is subject to protections and mitigations. Lastly, when you kill an enemy who had the burn effect on them, you will restore 15 health and mana.
This is the premier boxing item of Season 8, as the burn damage is so potent early game that it has made Apollo
a top pick in the jungle role. While the initial stats are lackluster, they work to give you a slight advantage in one-on-one fights. Pairing this with attack speed is vital to maximizing the passive.
At level 20, you can upgrade to Manikin Hidden Blade
, which provides +75 basic attack damage, +30 physical protections, and +5 damage reduction. Also, if you have been out of combat for 5 seconds, and then enter combat with a basic attack that connects, you will instantly deal 15% of the target's current health as physical damage and slow the enemy hit for 20% for 5 seconds. This can be applied to enemy gods, jungle camps, and even Fire Giant and Gold Fury.
The best-case scenario for this passive is when you are rotating into a fight and catch the enemy off guard. Nemesis
has two slows that are relatively safe to apply in Slice and Dice
and Divine Judgement
, as well as a percentage health damage in her ultimate. Essentially, this item is an extension of Nemesis
' kit, and a 5 second slow is very potent, more than enough for you to unload your kit or for your team to follow with a CC train of death.
If going this starter, an auto-attack build focused on attack speed and buffing your basic attacks would suit you best.
Eye of the Jungle -> Protector of the Jungle
Labeled as the attack speed starter item for junglers, Eye Of The Jungle
is an underrated pick with tons of utility behind it outside of your build. Upon purchase, you gain +10 physical power, +10 HP5 (Health regained every 5 seconds), and 10% attack speed. You also deal 30% more damage to all jungle monsters, and upon killing a big jungle monster, such as: buff holders, large harpies, Oracles by the Gold Fury, and Pyromancer, you will drop a ward on the exact spot they got killed that lasts 30 seconds. Lastly, while in the jungle, you will gain an extra +15 HP5 (total +25 HP5 from this item) and +10 MP5.
This item's passive gets better as the game goes on, as not only will you be clearing camps faster with the damage buff, but the ward placement, while niche/situational, is still impactful in giving information on the enemy team at key moments in the game. Higher level play will have you invading enemy jungle camps, so this will also portray the enemy jungler's movements and possible ganks before they commence.
At level 20, you can upgrade to Protector Of The Jungle
, which provides +55 physical power, +35 physical protections, and +25% attack speed. Also, in lieu of placing wards upon clearing camps, this item will increase your physical power and protections of both kinds by 12% while you are in the jungle.
As you are the jungler, you will be in the jungle a lot throughout the game, either picking off an enemy out of position, getting ready to gank the enemy, or grouping for a major objective push like Fire Giant. The added power aids in the offensive aspects of juggling, while the added protections make sure that if you are on the receiving end of an attack, you are beefier and can save your life. While free wards is awesome, its a necessary tradeoff, and as you are level 20, 50-100 gold is negligible, and should be used buying wards anyways.
If going this starter, a bruiser build with both power and protections/utility would suit you best.
Warrior Tabi or Ninja Tabi?
While the choice seems simple, the nuances in each option must be considered. Warrior Tabi
offers +40 physical power, while Ninja Tabi
offers +20 physical power and +20% attack speed. Both give the same amount of movement speed and mana, so the real decision is between more power for your auto attacks versus more/faster auto attacks. Preferably, you want to pair the boots with the rest of your build. Warrior Tabi
is for a burst build and Ninja Tabi
is for a shred build. For more info, try this DPS (damage per second) calculator.
Mace -> The Crusher
One of the items you can pair with your starter of choice, Mace
provides +15 physical power. It's great for an early power spike, giving more damage to your abilities early on.
Once you are able to, you will purchase The Crusher
, which provides +30 physical power, +20% attack speed, and +15 flat physical penetration, meaning that all of your attacks will ignore 15 of any enemy's physical protections, even structures. Additionally, all enemies hit will take 20+15% of your physical power as extra damage over 2 seconds. The passive is potent in the mid-to-late game, and even a good kill secure. Paired with the stats, a solid pickup overall that Slice and Dice
makes great use of.
Quick note, any extra damage on any item passive that is listed as "physical damage" can be affected by mitigations, so build another pen item if you want to increase its effectiveness.
Katana -> Golden Blade
Another one of the items you can pair with your starter of choice, Katana
provides +10 physical power and 3% movement speed. The extra movement speed is great, as it will make your rotation to camps and ganks much faster in the early game, where speed is everything.
Once you are able to, you will purchase Golden Blade
, which provides +30 physical power, +15% attack speed, and +10% movement speed. Additionally, every basic attack will now have an invisible AoE that deals 50% of your basic attack damage to all enemies in a respectable area around the target you hit. This was the best item at some point for its clearing potential. You will notice that upon purchasing this, you will be able to clear camps in the early game with just basic attacks, saving you mana for ganks and escaping.
Light Blade -> The Executioner
Another one of the items you can pair with your starter of choice, Light Blade
provides +5 physical power nd 10% attack speed. The added attack speed will help you apply your passive faster, turning to faster camp clear and better early fight potential.
Once you are able to, you will purchase The Executioner
, which provides +35 physical power and +25% attack speed. Addtionally, each basic attack applies a debuff to all enemies hit that decrease physical protections by 7% for 3 seconds, with a maximum 4 stacks. This item only gets better as the game goes on, and opens up space in your build for more power or utility. It can be used well with Divine Judgement
to rid an opponent of almost all of their protections and maximize your damage.
Morningstar -> Dominance
Another one of the items you can pair with your starter of choice, Morningstar
provides +10 physical power and +5 Mp5. The added Mp5 is good for your sustain early game.
Once you are able to, you will purchase Dominance
, which provides +55 physical power, +200 mana, +20 Mp5, and 10% physical penetration, meaning that all your damage will ignore 10% of any opponent's physical protection. Additionally, your basic attacks will ignore an extra 10%, for a total of 20% physical penetration for your basic attacks. This goes great with attack speed items, and the added power will really have you hitting like a truck early on.
- Jotunn's Wrath will always be a staple burst build item. With +50 physical power, +150 mana, +10 physical penetration, and +20% cooldown reduction, no passive is needed for any god to make use of it.
- A newer item in SMITE, Arondight proves to be a heavyhitter in recent jungle metas. Upon purchase, you are granted +75 physical power and +10% CDR. Additionally:
As your ultimate not only shreds protections, but makes you move faster, that first auto attack will be as easy as ever to hit.
- When you cast your ultimate, all enemy gods, even if stealthed, in a 120 unit (very big) radius are revealed for 8s.
- Moving towards a revealed god makes you move 30% faster.
- The first basic attack that hits an enemy god after ultimate cast will deal 40+30% of your physical power.
- Heartseeker is a slept-on contender in high power builds, providing +65 physical power, +10% physical penetration, +200 mana, and +20 Mp5. Additionally:
The ease of this item comes with the fact that by the time you buy it, you will already have 200 or more physical power, so it will only increase in usage and damage as the game lingers on.
- Your abilities deal bonus damage equal to a portion of the target enemy's health as physical damage.
- The bonus damage scales with your power, from 2% of the enemy's health at 200 physical power to 5% of the enemy's health at 400 physical power.
- Any ability that hits the same enemy within 3 seconds of the first will deal 75% of the supposed bonus damage.
- Since the beginning of SMITE, Bloodforge has been recognized as a late game monster, providing +75 physical power and +15% lifesteal. Additionally, upon killing an enemy god, you gain a shield equal to 200+10 per your level (400 at level 20), that lasts 20 seconds or until destroyed, as well as +10% movement for the same duration.
Obviously, once the shield is active, it will incentivize you to go for more kills. That potent of a shield on a squishy, as well as Retribution, is ample protection to dive in and secure the team fight win. The movement is also much appreciated as an aide to the chasing you will do in the later stages of the game. Alternatively, it can save your life, as you may be on the verge of death when you kill your captors, and use the shield and movement to escape to safety.
Auto Attack Options
- What's Nemesis without her sword? Stone Cutting Sword provides +50 physical power and +7% movement speed. Additionally, basic attacking enemies will steal 10 of their physical protections and apply them to you for 3 seconds, for a maximum of 3 stacks, or 30 physical protections. This works great with Scales of Fate, so much so that one basic attack will apply both passives. Therefore, after 3 basic attacks, they will have 21% less power and 30 less physical protections, and you will gain said stolen stats. A no-brainer purchase if focusing on your basic attacks.
- My personal favorite AA canceling item, Hydra's Lament provides +40 physical power, +10% CDR, and +10 MP5. Additionally,
- When using an ability, your next basic attack within 8 seconds will deal 40% more damage. This does work with Retribution, meaning you can basic attack, click 3 for the shield and auto-attack chain reset, then basic attack again to apply the extra damage.
- For every 10% of your mana expended, you will gain +2.5 MP5. With an empty mana bar, you will gain +25 MP5, meaning this item gives 35MP5. With the cooldown this item provides, you will be able to pump out abilities at a faster rate, making use of this second passive.
- The "tank-shredder," Qin's Sais provides +40 physical power and +20% attack speed. Additionally, every basic attack that hits an enemy god deals extra damage based on their maximum health, scaling from 3% until 2000 HP to 5% after 2750 HP. This damage is physical, so it is subject to mitigations, meaning that a penetration item like The Executioner is beneficial to making the best use of this item.
- The ultimate boxing gloves, Ichaival provides +30 physical power and +30% attack speed. Additionally, each basic attack increases your physical power by 15 and reduces the enemy's attack by 10% for 5 seconds, for a maximum of 3 stacks (+45 power and -30% attack speed). This also pairs well with Scales of Fate, giving you a flat power buff and attack speed advantage.
- On the opposite end of the boxing spectrum is
Sun Wukong's passive Berserker's Shield, which provides +40 physical power, +20 physical protections, +10% physical penetration, and +20% attack speed. Additionally, if you drop below 40% of your maximum health, you will gain +30 physical power and +15% attack speed for 5 seconds. This is good for when you are in a pinch/nail-biting 1v1 fight.
- What used to be Masamune is now The Sledge, which provides +40 physical power, +250 health, +150 mana, and 20% CC reduction (Crowd Control is only 80% effective on you). Additionally, for each enemy within 55 units (ranged auto attack distance), you gain 8 of each protection, for a maximum of 3 stacks, or 24 of each protection. This is for the diving Nemesis, that will effectively backline but also expects return fire from the enemy's teammates, because rarely is an ambush ever perfect.
- The premier bruiser jungler item, Void Shield provides +150 health, +20 physical power, and +60 physical protection. Additionally, you have a 55 unit aura around you that reduces any enemy's protections by 15%. Simple, yet super, and even frees an item space for you to build more power, or penetration, to forego as many defense that the enemy has and deal as much damage as possible.
- Lastly, an anti-heal item, just in case you are facing a pesky Chang'e or Aphrodite in the middle lane, Toxic Blade provides +100 health, +15 physical penetration, +30% attack speed, and +7% movement speed. Additionally, your basic attacks reduce enemy healing by 20% per stack for 6 seconds, for a maximum 2 stacks, or 40%. With the new anti-heal changes to Season 8, it is still beneficial to decrease enemy sustain. By using the Retribution AA cancel trick, you can apply the full anti-heal stacks in less than a second.