Introduction and Deck Stats
Hey there, Raphterra here! Today, I’m bringing to you a guide on Undying Nasus Thresh.
I used this deck personally to climb from Diamond IV to Diamond I 80 LP at 60% win rate (60 Wins – 40 Losses). If you want to see the deck in action after reading this article, check out my detailed video guide!
To give you an idea of the deck build and the play pattern, please watch the following deck trailer for Undying Nasus Thresh:
As you’ve seen from the trailer, Nasus Thresh is an aggressive midrange deck that wants to use early slay units ( Baccai Reaper, Cursed Keeper, Fading Icon, Blighted Caretaker ) to deal as much Nexus damage as possible in the early game. In the mid game, Thresh and Nasus can start levelling up as you slay more units. The deck wins by attacking with a big Fearsome Nasus, or by directly damaging the Nexus with Atrocity.
The Undying is the unique inclusion in my version of Nasus Thresh, and I believe it to be a necessary card to include in this archetype. Having The Undying on board is an assurance that you have a slay target for your slay cards ( Rite of Calling, Glimpse Beyond, Blighted Caretaker, Spirit Leech ). When I was testing versions without The Undying, there were many spots where I lost games because had no good fodder for my slay cards.
I recommend that you change the ratios of the deck depending on what you’re facing. For example, if you’re facing more elusive or combo decks, you can add more copies of Quicksand.
If you find yourself facing more control decks, you can opt to add more copies of Rite of Negation.
You generally want your opening hand to have at least 1 slay target and 1 slay activator. Cursed Keeper and Fading Icon are the best slay targets for this deck. You usually want to keep only 1 slay target in your opening hand.
If you have both Cursed Keeper and Fading Icon, you should prioritize keeping Cursed Keeper. An exemption to this is if you’re facing an aggro deck, in which case you may want keep Fading Icon as well to have early blockers.
If you already have a slay target, you need to keep or look for a slay activator like Blighted Caretaker or The Wings and The Wave. I want to reiterate that you generally don’t want to keep slay activators unless you already have slay targets. You may find yourself having these slay activators dead in your hand if you don’t have slay targets.
The Undying is a slay target that is good to keep against slower grindy matchups like Ezreal Caitlyn. If you already have a good hand, you can opt to keep one of your utility spells depending on what you’re facing.
- Track your board space.
If you’re new to playing this deck, it can be easy to forget to keep track of the board space you need to do your combos with Blighted Caretaker.
If you plan to use the Blighted Caretaker + Cursed Keeper combo, you need to have a maximum of 3 units on board prior to doing the combo (including Cursed Keeper).
If you’re going to use Blighted Caretaker on a different unit, you can have a maximum of 4 units on board.
- Work for Thresh‘s level up.
In the mid game, try to always work for Thresh‘s level up if you can afford to. For example, if you have initiative on Turn 4 and both players have wide boards, you may want to wait until Turn 5 so that you can play Thresh before trading boards.
- Change your deck depending on what you’re facing.
As I mentioned earlier, this deck is very flexible in terms of its tech cards. You probably always need to adjust your deck depending on what you’re facing. For example, during my climb, I was facing lots of Ahri Bard and Frozen Thralls, so I ran 2 copies of Quicksand for these matchups. These small changes will have a big effect on your overall winrate, so make sure to keep track of the decks that you’re facing and adjust accordingly.
Matchups and Mulligans
Mono Shurima – Favored
- Tech cards: +Rite of Negation, –Quicksand
- You can overwhelm them in the early game with Blighted Caretaker. Deal as much Nexus damage early to make closing the game out easier.
- Avoid playing Thresh into Roiling Sands. They will have a hard time stopping Thresh from levelling up if you protect him.
- If they flip the Buried Sun Disc, use smaller units as fodder to protect your champions from Level 3 Xerath. Level 2 Nasus can beat their deck in the late game.
Aphelios Winding Light – Favored
- Tech cards: +Quicksand, –Crumble
- They want to go wide with their early units, try to keep their board as narrow as possible by forcing trades early.
- They will eventually try to go for a big attack with The Winding Light. That will be a good opportunity to level up Thresh. You can also prepare Quicksand to protect your Nexus from Overwhelm units.
- Black Spear is a good tool to remove Aphelios.
Lurk – Favored
- Tech cards: +Quicksand, –Black Spear
- Keep trading units early and try to be the aggressor. Blighted Caretaker can win you the early game if you remove their early Lurk units.
- Their biggest threats are Rek’Sai and Lurk units with Overwhelm. Quicksand lets you block them with your smaller units.
- If you know that they have Rek’Sai in their hand, Nasus’ Siphoning Strike is a good tool to stop her from attacking.
Annie Jhin – Even
- Tech cards: +Vile Feast/Undergrowth, –Crumble
- This matchup is close to even because if you don’t draw early units, you will most likely be unable to come back in the mid game.
- Hard mulligan for early units. Keep trading units in the early game. An early Blighted Caretaker can stop most of their momentum, which will allow you to stabilize into the mid game.
- Once you stabilize, they won’t have an answer for Level 2 Nasus. You can threaten Atrocity and Rite of Negation to counter their burn spells.
Ahri Bard – Unfavored
- Tech cards: +Quicksand, -Crumble
- This matchup is unfavored because levelling up your champions is difficult due to them running multiple copies of Homecoming and Ionian Tellstones.
- Try to race them down with early aggression and force them to block with their elusive units. Try to trade units early before they level up Bard.
- Surviving one more turn with Quicksand can lead to wins in a matchup where both decks want to race each other.
Jayce Lux – Unfavored
- Tech cards: +Vengeance, –Black Spear
- This matchup will be closer to even if you run multiple copies of Vengeance. If you can remove Lux, they won’t be able to control your board.
- They tend to have a slow early game. Try to go wide and deal as much Nexus damage as possible before they play Lux.
- From Turn 5 onwards, you need to look for ways to remove Lux with Crumble or Vengeance. If they can stick Lux, you will most likely lose your board and lose the game.
Nasus Thresh has always been a favorite deck of mine. This is one of the decks that I loved playing way back when I was still seriously competing in Seasonal Tournaments. Since then, it received several nerfs, and saw very little play for the past metas. With Patch 3.10, Thresh Nasus might be on pace to become a relevant deck for ranked ladder.