LoL: Poor Little Rune! Why No One Uses Nullifying Orb in League of Legends

All in all, the current rune system in League of Legends works just great. Sometimes there are a few outliers in terms of their power level,

Amumu lol little knight nullifying orb
LoL: Don't worry, Amumu! You're not the only one feeling neglected... | © Riot Games

If you have played League of Legends for long enough, you will definitely have your preferences when it comes to runes. Do you like playing tanks or marksmen? Do you like to play aggressive or more defensive? There is a rune for everyone! Although the selection of runes is vast, there are some, that really don't click with a majority of the community.

One of these runes is "Nullifying Orb". I hope you have at least heard of it! Although that doesn't automatically mean you like using it, I guess... Nullifying Orb is actually one of the least-played runes in League of Legends! But why does no one actually give it a shot?

Nullifying Orb: The Most Unpopular League of Legends Rune?

For all of you guys that never even cared to take Nullifying Orb into your line-up of runes – what does it even do? Well, let's see how Riot describes the rune:

Nullifying Orb
  • If you would take magic damage that would reduce you below 30% of your maximum health, you first gain a shield that absorbs 35 − 110 (based on level) (+ 14% bonus AD) (+ 9% AP) magic damage for 4 seconds.

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Doesn't sound too bad, right? Nullifying Orb is a rune that grants you a magic shield when you are receiving damage that would put you under a certain threshold – quite similar to the passive that Maw of Malmortius grants you. But why is it so unpopular?

Nullifying orb has to be the most forgotten rune in the game
by u/Thomax99 in leagueoflegends

The League of Legends Subreddit recently had a discussion about this topic. User "Thomax99" asked about the state of Nullifying Orb. Even though they were uncertain as to why no one likes this rune, one user quickly came up with an interesting and comprehensible take:

The reason it’s so unpopular is because it’s a defensive rune in an aggressive tree. Most people will take resolve if they need some defense. Almost all mana users prefer manaflow band, and most non-mana users don’t take Sorcery as their primary tree. As a secondary tree, there is almost never a reason to take it over runes like transcendence, gathering storm, etc.

Cosmic enchantress lulu
Even more defensive champs like Lulu fare better with runes like Manaflow Band. | © Riot Games

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Makes sense, right? Sorcery is a rune tree that provides a lot of offensive capability. The other options you can choose from besides Nullifying Orb are Manaflow Band and Nimbus Cloak. The first alternative is great for champions that are very reliant on their abilities and their mana – you gain mana whenever you hit an enemy champion.

While Nimbus Cloak, a rune which grants you ghosting and bonus movement speed after using a summoner spell, isn't too popular either, Manaflow Band is too great not to roll with. If you are playing a champion that profits off of defensive runes, the Resolve tree will always be the better option.

Going for Sorcery as a secondary tree is still possible anyway, but in their current forms, Manaflow Band just outshines both Nimbus Cloak and Nullifying Orb. Should Riot maybe try to rework some forgotten and under-used runes?

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