How To Team Fight Ep. 2 (Gambit vs Ozone) Target Selection And Positioning

Transcript

G’day this is UberGiantsBro, and in this episode of How To Team Fight we’re breaking down the big team fights from the Gambit Gaming vs Samsung Galaxy Ozone game in the group stage of the season 3 world championships. The main themes I’m focusing on this episode is target selection and positioning, two extremely important factors to team fighting and I’ll be pulling on a core concept from Summoner School as well so keep an eye out for that. Btw we’ll be going over this team fight slowly so don’t worry, I just needed something to play in the background haha okay let’s get into it.

So the two big main points for this team fight are this great initiation that we’re about to see from Jarvan and Zyra as well as the Shen’s position. So first for Shen, he’s a pretty tanky bloke so he stays to finish off the tower but he holds on to his taunt. He doesn’t burn it straight away! I see so many Shen’s that just taunt straight at the carries and end up missing and being useless for the rest of the fight. Instead what Darrien does on Shen here is he holds on to his Taunt, effectively creating a zone which scares Vayne and Ryze.

So I’ll just play it forward a bit more. As we see Ryze and Vayne are still focusing Shen while the rest of Ozone engage. Pausing it again, if you look at Shen’s items you’ll see he has a lot of auto attack blocking potential with Doran Shield, Ninja Tabi and most likely defense masteries too because he knows Vayne is going to be the main one focusing him in this team composition. This is great itemization from Shen. But doesn’t Vayne deal a lot of true damage from Silver bolts and Bork? Sure, she does. But the problem is that Shen is not a priority target, especially since Shen doesn’t deal much damage himself.

Just because you can kill a tank quickly, that doesn’t mean you should focus the tank. But Vayne doesn’t have many other options, since she is so short range and Ozone is all clumped up it would be dangerous for her to go near the group. Now is a great time to bring in the summary of the position and target model taken from Summoner School.

“A champion is in the best position and attacks the best target when he is unlikely to die and attacks the greatest damage dealer.”

I think this is a great principal to follow for team fighting when you don’t know who you should be focusing. In regards to our example here, Vayne is force to focus the Shen because he is the only target she can really get at safely. This also applies to Ryze, but because Ryze is a bit more tanky and the Sona Crescendo is down he could probably afford to move straight towards the main fight.

So as the fight plays on a bit more, all of Ozone’s front line get destroyed by the high burst of Gambit and Vayne only picks up a kill on the Eve. The key factor in that fight was great zoning from a tanky Shen and Ryze not having his ultimate up for the engage – imagine if Ryze was in position to get his AOE off when Zyra and Jarvan engaged.

This team fight is a great fight because even though Ozone is behind, their carries are still able to exercise great target selection by focusing the greatest damage dealers while being unlikely to die most of the team fight. They’re basically doing my job for me, I could just let you watch them in slow-mo haha.

But no, so as soon as Eve gets in range of Ryze, Ryze focuses her and then immediately backs off with his cd’s. Let’s take a look at where the main damage threats are because we’ll be focusing on them mostly (KOG, EVE, RYZE, VAYNE). They are fairly spread out, but here’s a general idea of where the focus should be for each carry – Ahri has most of her skills on CD so she isn’t a big threat for now. Kog can focus Jarvan and Singed because the group focus brings them down very fast.

As it turns out, Vayne is able to chase Eve all the way down here because she knows Eve’s ult is down. Playing slowly forward a bit more, Vanye immediately turns her attention to Kog after Eve instead of Sona because Sona is not a threat. It could be argued that Kog should’ve switched to Vayne earlier as soon as Vayne went after Eve but Singed was low already so they focused him as a team before turning on to Vayne.

A play worth mentioning here is that even though Ryze is focusing Shen, it effectively allowed Vayne to go ham. Again, notice the target selection where Vayne focuses the Ahri even though she is practically in the middle of four enemies. This is a big risk but a calculated risk, all a part of making good decisions on who you should be targeting. Team fighting dynamics can get very complicated like this so even though the position and target model is extremely useful, there is more to it which you can learn about in Summoner School. I’ll try my best to explain them here for you in these videos.

A lot of knowing who to focus comes down to practice and evaluating yourself by watching recorded games of your team fights after you play. In game in an actual team fight you’re repeatedly asking yourself, “is this guy a threat, is this guy a threat?” to determine where you should be positioned and who you should be focusing but a lot of what you learn about positioning and focus can be forgotten in the heat of the moment. If you remember one thing, try to remember the summary of the positioning and target model from Summoner School “A champion is in the best position and attacks the best target when he is unlikely to die and attacks the greatest damage dealer.”

That’s all for this Team Fight Analysis, I hope you learned something and if you did make sure to give it a thumbs up. I just wanted to give a quick shout out to my Twitter @UberGiantsBro which is a great way to get in touch with me or ask any questions you may have. Thanks for watching and have fun dunking noobs in solo queue.

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How to Get Gold Before Season 4

With Worlds fast approaching, and Season Three coming to a close, I’m sure a lot of people in Bronze and Silver are trying their hardest to achieve the gold league milestone so highly sought after. You get a prestigious gold border for season 4 as well as Victorious Elise skin.

Most players will blame their team if they will not achieve gold in solo queue. This mentality is counterproductive and explained in a video by UberGiantsBro on why you’re stuck in silver. So if you accept the fact that “it’s all up to you” then the next question is “how do I do it?”

The easiest way to explain how to single handily carry a solo queue match is through the concept of resource. When I refer to resource I refer to a culmination of CS and kills of all players on each side. So for five players on a team, your resource is spread across five players. The ideal distribution of resource can be seen below. As you can see, each of your allies should be equal with the enemy but you should aim to equal two enemies (not including your lane opponent).

Ideal distribution of resource in solo queue

The problem in bronze and silver solo queue, is that resource advantage seldom matters. This is because unskilled players who are fed do not push their advantage. It can also be assumed that your team mates will lose skirmishes vs opponents of equal resource. It is for these reasons that it is up to you to attract a majority of the enemies resource, and waste it.

To do this there first needs to be a large deficit in your lane opponent’s resource compared to yours. This means zoning them from CS and killing them. Early-game, the most dynamic resource is the jungler. Junglers can single-handily create a resource imbalance. The opposing jungler can counter-gank which then creates a neutral balance in resource.

To carry a solo queue match you need the enemy jungler to gank your lane and your allied jungler to do anything EXCEPT gank your lane. This is vastly different to most people’s mindset of crying for a gank. It allows for two things to happen:

  1. A resource advantage for your team mates. When the enemy jungler ganks you, he is not ganking your allies. They have a higher chance of not dying and your allied jungler can counter jungle, take dragon, or gank another lane.
  2. This gives you an opportunity to either trade a kill or waste the enemy jungler’s time. Great players can even get a double kill.

The next step is to help your team mates further. This can be done by taking an early tower, roaming to another lane, taking an objective. The most important thing at this point is to never stop the pressure. Go back to your lane and push hard. The resource deficit between you and your lane opponent will mean their jungle HAS to come to you – and if you’re lucky (not unlucky!) so will another laner. It is also usually beneficial to type over team chat: “push when I push”. From here one of two things happen:

  1. They will send more resource to stop your pushing.
  2. They will send more resource to gank your allies.

In the first situation, you again need to trade or waste their time. For the second situation, kill your lane opponent and push as hard as you can.

The fundamental principle of this style of carry is you do not rely heavily on your allies. Your contribution to the team is fairly subtle through reducing the enemies’ available resource and acquiring global gold.

The biggest factor that the game will hang on is YOU. Your map awareness, mechanics, and decision making determine your win or loss. All concepts are explained in detail here at Summoner School.

For an example of the concepts discussed in this article please watch this Silver match I played earlier:

Below is the resultant resource distribution. As you can see, if they wanted to match my resource they would need to allocate at least three players to me. If I had gone equal in lane to Cho’Gath, we would of lost.

Example resource distribution

Another thing to note from this example is that it is not enough to hold a large amount of resource. Almost as equally important is pressure. A majority of that game I put pressure on their team by pushing towers, they chose to fight the rest of my team and ultimately paid for it.

This style of play alone will not guarantee you a gold ranking, but coupled with solid mechanics and decision making, there is no stopping you. Go get your rewards.

Goodluck,

Daniel ‘Kingpin’ King

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The Best Solo Queue Cheese In LoL

Solo Queue Cheese

There are plenty of good Cheese tactics out there – sly tricks that catch people off guard or nab easy kills – that players like to use gain elo, but what are the best ones? Keep reading as I try to avoid making cheese related puns…. and as I give you my top 8 solo queue cheeses.

1. The ‘Blue Buff Bum Rush’.

Commonly known in low elo as the ‘we have Blitzcrank, let’s invade’ tactic, this cheese works surprisingly often in solo queue. Normally it depends on how fast your team gets out of the blocks to decide if you actually want to sprint to their blue or not. All you do is tell your team to buy fast in champion select (“Cause we’re invading yo”) and then make a beeline for their blue (if everyone bought fast). You can go through the mid lane but I would recommend crossing the river and getting your support to explorer ward that middle river bush on your way past (to make sure no sneaky hobbits spot you). Then run straight to the blue and ward it and back out if you don’t catch anyone.

This strat could be dangerous, especially against an aware support but it more often than not does good than bad in solo queue. And hey if it back fires, have a quick laugh about it with your team and move on to the next cheese tactic.

2. The ‘Level 2 All-In’.

Great for top, bot lane and those mids that are reliant on snowballing early (like Pantheon) this tactic requires you to push a tiny bit (not too much or the enemy may just back off completely) so that you can hit level 2 first and use your level, skill, health and damage advantage to ‘all-in’ your opponent(s). Red pots are a great start for this strat because of the extra AD and Health they give you depending on what champion you’re playing. The key to executing this cheese comes with how you push the lane. You don’t want to push too hard else they may just let you push all the way up to the tower and not lose anything because none of your creeps will have died yet. You want to push just fast enough so that you hit level 2 one or two creeps ahead of them but not so fast that you scare them off.

***BONUS CHEESE (Flat Out Early Pushing).

Most LoL players generally suck at last hitting under their tower (especially in lower elos) so one thing you can do to reduce how much cs (and therefor gold) they acquire is to push them under their tower hard early game. The reason early game (level 1-5) is the best time to do this is because players generally start getting more abilities or items that help them last hit under the tower easily after their first buy or simply when they level up. You want to start being careful around level 5 or 6 because that’s when the enemy Jungler may be looking to gank you with his ultimate. In general, hard pushing someone against their turret allows you to harass them easier (because they have to be stationary at some point to get cs) or put damage onto the turret. ps. make sure you have wards for this or tell all your lanes to push aggressively (this may be hard to pull off as a team in solo queue).

3. The ‘Recall Bait’.

This one is a bit tricky. There is also two different types of recall baits which I’ll explain now. The first isn’t as good but it can work sometimes. Simply recall to town in sight of your opponent to bait them in closer for a kill (preferably with your Jungler nearby, out of line of sight). It’s similar to this classic ‘fake dc’ by Dyrus. The second one, well I think the best way to explain it is for you to watch this recall bait. Basically, you stand right near a bush but not in it as if you were supposed to go into the bush to recall and start your recall, but right before you recall, cancel it and run inside the bush. This can trick them into thinking you actually recalled when you recalled didn’t, lulling them in to a false sense of security. Then you kill them.

4. The ‘Red Buff To Red Buff’ Invade.

This tactic requires two things, well three things actually;

  1. An aggressive Jungler or someone who is strong at level 2 eg. Lee Sin, Nocturne, Shaco.
  2. An enemy Jungler that usually starts blue or alternatively early vision to see if  they are indeed starting blue.
  3. Balls. Not even kidding. If you mess this up you may put yourself behind because of the fact you wasted so much time going to his buff instead of just taking your second buff with smite and snowball the game in the wrong way!

***An extra note about Shaco here. You can actually perform the same trick except at level 3. To do this you need to follow the double buff strat, explained by FoxDropLoL.

An aggressive summoner spell (exhaust or ignite) is also a possibility here, although it’s not a necessity. Flash can help you escape if the mid lane happens to collapse on your position fast. What you do is you get a smiteless on your Red then run straight to their red (the sneaky bush way, not the wraith way). Here you make a decision. Either try to kill them while they are taking agro from red buff  (because nearly all Junglers go straight from smiteless blue to red) or smite steal the red (very risky) to get the extra exp and then go on them. If you perform it correctly you can continue to put heavy pressure on the enemy Jungler, taking their wraiths and/or mini-golems.

You should have the advantage in any duel due to the fact that you have a red buff and a stronger level 2 (hopefully) while they just have a blue buff. The risk is, of course, that because you are in enemy territory the enemy mid laner is likely to get there before yours, not to mention they may have warded the entrance to their red. This may not matter though if you coordinate it with your team. Make sure you tell your team what your plan is and to either push aggressively early (so their lane enemy can’t come to help or at least they lose more if they do) or ping like mad if a lane goes MIA.

5. The ‘Proxy’.

Uhh. Just the word makes me cringe. How many crazy ‘Chemical Men’ have you seen farming behind turrets? If you’ve played against one before, you’ll know how annoying it can be. If not, I’m sure you’ll experience the joy of it one day. Yes, it can be a tad risky sometimes but on certain champions and against certain matchups (like Shen because of his low amount of dueling potential and wave clear) this can be a great tactic you can use to pressure the enemy team.

The delicious cheesy benefits of proxying? The main benefit is that you force the enemy’s attention upon yourself, relieving pressure elsewhere on the map. Unfortunately they did nerf this tactic a little bit a few patches ago with the changes to death streak gold and experience values. Now enemies get a little more reward for repeatedly killing you instead of the squat-all they got for killing a 0-6 -0 Tryndamere. It just means you have to be a bit more careful when proxying so that you don’t get snowballed on rather than helping your team.

The other benefit of course is that you get to keep your lane opponent at their turret – especially useful against champs like Shen who have very slow pushing power (especially early on) or a teleport. If they teleport away to help their team, you’ll be making sure to deny as many creeps (and therefor gold and exp) as possible as your creeps run straight to the enemy turret to die.

So when is the best time to proxy? As Singed, anytime is a good time to proxy. But more generally, you might be able to proxy if you get an advantage on your lane opponent through a couple early kills and/or they have a hard time pushing waves out like mentioned before. Here is an example of proxying with singed if you need to see an example.

Champs that you generally see proxying are those with quick wave clear or lots of sustain. Good examples are Tryndamere, Singed, Renekton, Zac or almost any other champ that gets ahead. Try it in a normal game before trying it in ranked! Oh and hey, it’s even possible in other lanes! Check out the start of this funny video of Chauster and Doublelift doing a bit of proxying as they duo bot lane in Bronze.

6. The ‘Support Carry’.

Supporting can be real boring sometimes for those of us that don’t enjoy support that much. Why not try something different? People are so used to playing against the standard Flash/Exhaust/Ignite supports with support masteries and runes that any variant may catch someone off guard. Try running barrier or heal on your support and try running different runes rather than gp5 stuff. For example if you’re playing Zyra you can either go full AP and surprise people with your burst or you can go full AD and abuse the enemy lane opponents early with your long auto attack. Or you can play AD Janna and auto their ADC twice with the shield on yourself. It hurts and can win you the lane early and give safe farm to your ADC for a few minutes.

Generally people run exhaust on support for a reason – it’s great for later team fights when you have to exhaust someone diving your ADC. But if you can get away with it, a random (surprise) barrier might just be all you need to win a 2v2 duel. aAnd they always forget about it! Running hybrid pen marks on supports like Sona/Zyra/Lulu has been fairly common for a while due to the massive mixed harass they can put out but why not take it one step further?

I once ran AD runes, masteries and summoners as Blitzcrank while my duo partner started off as support Graves. This wasn’t intentional (we forgot to trade haha) but it ended up working because I baited the enemy jungler into diving me at level 3 while I had barrier. They also all-in’d Graves at level 1-2 which allowed me to dps their ADC. Big mistake but next level stuff on my end ;-). Again, this might be worth trying in a normal game before you jump into a ranked with it. I do not advocate the useage of support mastery and runed Graves under any circumstances.

7. The ‘Ward Bait’.

Ahh the old ward bait. Put a ward down where the enemy support sees it or is likely to see it (say, on top of a pink ward) but have allies nearby when they come to clear it – like a bug attracted to the light – so that you can zap them. This cheese works at all elos and never gets old. Be careful for counter ward baits – while very rare, smarter foes may read the situation and bring their own backup! Here is an example of a simple ward bait for you to watch.

8. The ‘Garen’.

Possibly the oldest trick in the book. Stand in a bush and wait for an enemy to facecheck it. Simple yet effective, players have been using this strategy since before the ADC/Support bot lane meta became popular. Just check out Doublelift’s famous facecheck (I’m sure we’ve all done this at some point haha). If you don’t have to give a leash, there are two great places where this usually works.

For top lane, wait in the tri bush if you’re on the blue side or if you’re on purple side wait in that little brush near the river entrance to the lane. If the enemy is leashing blue they may run up through the river to save time. Perfect if you have a strong level 1 character so that you can chunk them right away.

For bot lane, either wait in the tri bush or in the enemies lane bush if you’re on purple side or in the river entrance lane bush or the enemies lane bush if you’re on blue side. Same again, wait for them to leash their buff and walk to lane and give them the old ‘Garen treatment’ (see picture below).

Where to wait if you have a better level 1.

Where to wait if you have a better level 1.

Well, that’s my list of the best solo queue cheese tactics, I hope you found it useful and that you can use them to grate your way to victory on Summoners Rift.  If you have your own ‘cheesy’ tactics that you would like to tell me about, I would love to hear them! Tweet me @UberGiantsBro or comment on this post. Also check out Summoner School, the only complete League of Legends guide with everything you need to get better at LoL. Until next time, all the best in solo queue.

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How to Team Fight in League of Legends: A Video Analysis of TSM and Vulcan

Transcript

What’s up Summoners! UberGiantsBro here and I’m proud to bring you the first episode of Learn to Team Fight with Summoner School. Today we’ll be doing an analysis of the big teamfights in TSM vs Vulcun’s game from day 1, week 7 of the NA LCS summer split and we’re focusing mainly on decision making so I encourage you to put yourself in these players shoes and see what you would have done differently in each situation. Alright let’s get into the first Team Fight!

Hey Summoners, I’m UberGiantsBro and today we’re having a look at teamfighting dynamics and the risk-reward factors that come with decision making in teamfights. I’ve hardly seen this taught anywhere else so I’m excited to share it with you and if it goes well I’ll look to do more teamfighting videos so I hope you learn something!

So what we’re gonna do is we’ll be break down some Pro level teamfights to see exactly why these players make these decisions so you can learn from them and improve. This episode we’ll be using the TSM vs Vulcun game from week 7 in the NA LCS . One thing I highly recommend you do is putting yourself in these players positions and thinking what you might’ve done differently in each scenario, so you can be critical of yourself and learn more!

[teamfight at 37.08 mins].

TSM looks to engage here because they have super minions coming down the mid lane, Xpecial pop Shurelyas to try and force the engage – you only have split seconds to make these decisions – OddOne follows up with a Flash Cocoon to try and force the engage further and even though it only hits Nasus it gets the flash out of Ashe which gives TSM’s dive comp an advantage.

So Regi is making a beeline for an Ashe with no escape while ManCloud on Ahri is sitting off on the wings because he wants to flank Twitch. As a small side flanking Twitch is a good idea because it makes it harder for him to AOE the teamfight. So right now Dyrus would be watching Regi for when he goes in. At this point Ashe should just distance herself from Zed as much as possible and wait for him to use some CDs before re-engaging. If you were Ashe, you’d want to be staring at Zed respecting his zone because he’d one shot you before you even auto attack.

So we go forward a bit more and notice that Bloodwater burns his hook on Elise and Regi goes ham.

So there’s a couple things, Ashe burns her arrow instead of holding it til after Zed uses his CDS, Regi is going ham – he may have got a bit lucky dodging under the arrow like that – and importantly Thresh burns his deathsentence on Elise.

This play was actually pretty big so I’ll explain why he did it. Bloodwater is in the mindset of ‘engage, let’s go counter engage’ rather than thinking about the exact abilities he wants to save for peel. So if instead he chose to save it for when Zed jumps in just moments later, the small amount of lockdown on Zed may have allowed Vulcun to burst him rather than Zed bursting Ashe, and the teamfight might have been different. It might seem like nitpicking but this (very small) mis-step from Bloodwater leaves Ashe open for assassination. What is a Flay and The Box going to do against Zed? Not much.

What you can take out of BloodWater’s mistake is that you should always be thinking about how you want to use each of your abilities in advance before you get into a teamfight.

Another thing to mention now is that Dyrus is ready, he would be watching Regi to time his ult for when he goes.

So as we play forward slowly a and Ashe gets popped despite the Thresh Flay, Ult and Exhaust and Zac’s Let’s Bouncedown being used on Zed.

The rest of the fight plays out a bit messily, OddOne bails like his ship is sinking but eventaully returns back to the fight to clean up.

So despite the Thresh Flay, Ult and Exhaust and Zac’s Let’s Bounce all being used on just Zed alone Ashe still gets popped because of the flash they managed to burn by forcing the engage with Shurelyas.

[teamfight at 40.17]

So the arrow comes in but instead of TSM backing off, they all move forward to cover Dyrus! [pause][arrows everywhere plz] So the reason why TSM did this instead of backing off like a lot of lower level players would do is to cover the guy who gets arrowed, this forces Vulcun to run past the other guys if they want to chain CC Rumble. Dyrus would be calm right now because he knows he is tanky and all he has to do is get his ult off. So Dyrus’ mindset now is looking for a good opporunity to hit as many people as possible with the Rumble ult.

So as we play forward a bit Xmithie withers Zed and BloodWater deathsentences Zed. Xmithie wasted his wither on Zed because the attack and movement speed debuff doesn’t really effect Zed here compared to say if he used it on Twitch instead. The reason he did that is because Zed is clearly still their #1 priority but again it’s just thinking about how you want to use your abilities before you get into a teamfight. But hey, Bloodwater learnt from his mistake and saved his Death Sentence for Zed – good players learn from their mistakes!

So the biggest thing that happened here is that in the rush to burst Zed (spirit rush get it?), Ahri clumped on Ashe and Thresh. Whenever you’re playing a carry position (and ESPECIALLY against AOE champs like Rumble) you always wanna try and stay split so it makes it harder for you to both get hit by AOE.

See that Rumble ult chunks the carries so hard. Here we have a 3 versus 4, a perfect example of a high risk, high reward situation where you have to make an instinctive decision. It’s hard to make this sort of split second decision but the more you do it the more confident you will become in yourself and the better decisions you will be able to make. Elise and Thresh choose to go in.

So I’ll just talk a bit more before recapping. These dynamic teamfight decisions are, I think, the most stressful but rewarding decisions in LoL – a game of decision making. You feel terrible when you make the wrong decision but you also feel great when you make the right one. Nobody makes perfect decisions all the time but the more you practice it and put yourself in that situation, the better you get at it. It’s like most skills in LoL that you can learn about in Summoner School, but there are sometimes blocks in the way that stop you from learning and you don’t even realise they’re there. This is one of the things Summoner School can help you reconise, if you’re interested in Summoner School check out the link in the description.

Well that’s it for this first teamfighting dynamics episode, I hope you learned something and enjoyed it. And if you did and you wanna see more of these videos make sure to let me know with a like or comment and share it with a mate who might find it useful. Also you can follow me on Twitter @UberGiantsBro. Thanks for watching and all the best in solo queue!

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69 Tips To Become A Better ADC In LoL

Hi there, I’m UberGiantsBro a diamond 1 ADC from NA (on 200 ping), pro player in Oceania, and here’s my 69 tips to become a better ADC. Enjoy!

Caitlyn

Tip #01: When learning ADC (or Marksman if you’re a hipster) focus on csing well first, you’ll have plenty of time to learn the other skills.
Tip #02: It may take you a few games with a new ADC to get used to their auto animation, try nailing cs first with bots or in a normal game first if you aren’t confident.
Tip #03: One of the best times to harass is when they move up for a last hit. They will normally be engaged in attacking the minion and so will not be able to retaliate in time.
Tip #04: Further more, if you see your opponent getting ready to harass you when you go for a cs you can surprise them by harassing them back instead of going for the cs.
Tip #05: Always check what summoner spells the enemy has.
Tip #06: Track when they use their summoners and write it in the chat, Flash has a 5 min~ cooldown.
Tip #07: Heavy pushing can be an effective strat as you force the enemy to last hit under the tower where you can more easily harass him/poke tower.
Tip #08: Don’t rely on your support for map awareness.
Tip #09: Dorans blade is the most effective start on most ADC’s, coupled with a couple lifesteal quints you generally have enough sustain to survive the early game.
Tip #10: Remember to check your runes and masteries! Adjust them accordingly before the game starts.

Tip #11: DID YOU KNOW; Caitlyn has the highest base Auto Attack (AA) range at of any ADC at 650, however Twitch, Koggers and Trist can all outrange her if you include their skills and passive at certain points in the game.
Tip #12: At 650, Cait’s redonkulous AA range makes her one of the best lane bullies in the game. Use this to your advantage by keeping the range leash on your opponent.
Tip #13: If you cast Cait’s Peacemaker (q) straight after her 90 Caliber Net (e) you can save time on the casting animation of the Peacemaker.
Tip #14: On a similar note to #3, if you use Ezreal’s Essence Shift (e) or Essence Flux (w) straight after a Mystic Shot (q) you can also lessen the time spent in .animation stun’. Great for blue Ezreal!
Tip #15: When versing Caitlyn in lane, make sure to keep an eye on her passive so you don’t get hit with a (BOOM) Headshot for free.
Tip #16: Try to always keep a Yordle Snap Trap (w) in your lane brushes when possible, this helps catch any sneaky yordles coming to gank you. Oh how many supports I’ve seen run into that brush when escaping too, quiet funny.
Tip #17: DID YOU KNOW; Corki’s Phosphurus Bomb (q) is one of the few abilities inLoL that can reveal stealth, it’s also the biggest reason why he’s known as a counter to Vayne in lane! Dat auto-q harass.
Tip #18: Harass effectively by using an auto into a Phosphurus Bomb.
Tip #19: Corki’s passive deals true damage equal to 10% of his AD on each AA, this is why flat AD runes are the most preferred for the Daring Bombardier.
Tip #20: Corki’s Gatling Gun (e) procs each of Leona’s passive, this is why Corki-Leona was one of the most feared bot lane combos back in the day.

Tip #21: DID YOU KNOW; Draven can catch enemy Draven’s axes – “Now this is how to move.”
Tip #22: It’s not Draven, it’s DRAAAAVEN. (joke)
Tip #23: Draven’s axes go towards where you click after your AA animation, practice it a lot if you want to move fluidly.
Tip #24: DID YOU KNOW; At 350hp Ezreal has the (tied) 2nd lowest base health out of any champion in the game, behind Lux at 345.
Tip #25: All of Ezreal’s abilities are skill shots, smartcast is highly recommend for maximum pew-pewness.
Tip #26: Ezreal is an extremely safe blind pick because he basically has no counters and he works with a lot of supports. He is also a very safe laner due to his long range Mystic Shot and his mobility makes him very safe in teamfights.
Tip #27: Ezreal’s lack of steroid is his only weakpoint as his damage tends to fall off late game so ADC’s that scale well into late can often be a good pick into an Ezreal lane ie. Vayne.
Tip #28: Graves gets rewarded for getting up in his opponents grill, he works well with bursty all-in supports like Leona, Alistar and Taric.
Tip #29: Smokescreen the enemy carries in teamfights as they may get scared and back off instead of following their team.
Tip #30: Graves can’t dash over the wall from wraiths to red (I’VE FAILED THAT ONE TOO MANY TIMES) but he can dash over most small walls.

Graves

Tip #31: Kog’Maw is widely known as the best late game ‘hyper carry’ due to his insane DPS and Range that comes with his Bio-Arcane Barrage (w).
Tip #32: Each of Living Artilleries (r) cost 40 additional mana if you use them within 6 seconds of the previous one. Space out your harass once you hit 6 so you don’t run oom.
Tip #33: Make sure to trade with your W up and back off a bit when it’s on cd.
Tip #34: Caustic Spittle (q) gives Kog passive attack speed – I didn’t know this for so long playing Koggers – and it increases as you level it up.
Tip #35: Miss Fortune’s passive movement speed becomes null when she takes damage, keep that in mind when playing as her or against her.
Tip #36: MF has very good all-in and poke in lane but her weakness is a lack of mobility (with her passive down) and a medium range.
Tip #37: MF has very good scaling with AD which makes BT core and a BT-LW-IE build viable on her.
Tip #38: On the opposite note, you can also build on-hit items for hilarious results because of her Impure Shots (w) ability.
Tip #39: Twitch can outrange turrets with his ulty – tower is 800 range and Twitch’s ult is 850. Not recommended to use his ult for towers.
Tip #40: Twitch has incredible early kill potential with his Expunge (e) as well as passive poison dot + ignite. You could use this to snowball your lane however if it doesn’t work it may hurt you more not having that barrier or cleanse.

Tip #41: Make sure you learn Expunges range, if you leave it too late to use it they might be out of range when you do and slip away.
Tip #42: If you’re having a hard time in lane, don’t be afraid to use your ult to harass/push the minions so you can cs easier or back off to buy.
Tip #43: DID YOU KNOW; Quinn is the only ADC with two forms (Jayce doesn’t count!)
Tip #44: You can proc Quinn’s Harrier passive twice in a row if you use Vault straight after firing the auto to proc the first passive.
Tip #45: Quinn’s blind from Blinding Assault (q) and insane movement speed from Valor (r) makes her incredibly good in duels and for split pushing respectively.
Tip #46: You can use Quinn’s vault to escape Jarvan’s ultimate, also if you use vault with your back to a small wall you can leap back over it. Fancy.
Tip #47: When playing against Tristana, stay away from the exploding minions if you can to avoid unneeded harass.
Tip #48: Tristana trades decently with auto-e harass, make sure to use it whenever the enemy AD gets in range then back off.
Tip #49: Last hitting with Trist under tower early is very tough, try pushing against her early if you can.
Tip #50: Many abilities can cancel Trist’s Rocket Jump (w) mid air or during the cast of it.

Tip #51: Hybrid pen marks are extremely effective on Trist due the mixed damage she deals early on.
Tip #52: Urgot did get hit quiet hard with the nerf to his ultimate a while ago but can still be an effective lane bully, make sure to run mana-regen runes/masteries to help spam those Acid Hunters (q).
Tip #53: DID YOU KNOW; Urgot has the lowest base range on his AA out of any ADC at 425.
Tip #54: Urgot gains a tonne of armour and magic resist from his Hyper-Kinetic Position Reverser (r) so try to use it at the start of an engage if possible for the bonus resist’s.
Tip #55: Because of Urgot’s hungriness for mana and how his kit works, he works great with Soraka as a support. If you time it well you can swap yourself in to a teamfight with a Soraka heal for insane amounts of Resists! What does the scanner say about Urgot’s armour level? IT’S OVER 9000!!! Ugh, these jokes, Urgot to be kidding me….
Tip #56: You can build Varus several ways and depending on how you build him you should consider maxing different skills. For example if you are stacking AD/arPen you could poke really well by maxing Varus’ Piercing Arrow (q) first or you might trying maxing his Blighted Quiver (w) – after a few points in other skills in the laning phase – if you are building attack speed first.
Tip #57: Despite the magic damage Varus deals, hybrid pen marks are not very effective on him as his q and e deal physical damage. ArPen or Flat AD would be the better choices.
Tip #58: Chain of Corruption (r) is a great initiation/counter initiation tool, don’t be afraid to fire it at the tanks as it will spread to nearby champions. Huehuehue.
Tip #59: As Vayne you can Tumble (q) into a wall to get an instant auto attack.
Tip #60: You can use Condemn (e) the enemy AD into the turret if they are farming infront of it, this might catch them offguard and lead to an easy kill.

Vayne

Tip #61: If there is a big wave pushing towards your turret try to trim it safely, you don’t want to engage near the big stack of minions (especially early) and you want to leave as few last hits as possible for when it hits the turret.
Tip #62: In teamfights you should be focusing the most valuable target within range that you can target safely. This sentence alone should guide you for how you broadly want to play a teamfight as an ADC.
Tip #63: Team’s generally rely on the ADC to push down objectives after a fight so you want to be one of the last standing if possible.
Tip #64: When the enemy has an orange line around them it means that they are targeting you.
Tip #65: If you can lead minions into a brush then you know the brush is warded (or there’s a teemo hiding in there).
Tip #66: You can get a nice advantage early by pushing straight away and hitting level 2 first, especially if you have a potent level 2 support like Alistar or Leona.
Tip #67: Experiment with your ADCs – be diverse with your builds and with your champions so that you can experience ALL the matchups and get to know what works best in what scenario.
Tip #68: Be critical of yourself. Don’t blame your support when you get ganked or when you die in a teamfight. There is almost ALWAYS something you could have done better. Learn. To. Be. Critical.
Tip #69: Keep up with the ‘fotms’ like Blue Ezreal. You don’t have to play it but generally it’s fotm for a reason (op) and you want to at least know how to counter it.

Thanks for reading, hope you enjoyed it and learned something. Follow me on Twitter @UberGiantsBro and sign up to Summoner School to learn everything you need to know to climb the leagues by clicking here.

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How to Form a Team That Will Challenge the Top

Since my involvement in the E-sports scene in Australia, I have played for the top League of Legends team (now known as Team Immunity) for two years. At the beginning of this year I took a step back from a player role and now am the manager, coach, and team analyst for Team Exile5 Eclipse.

During my experiences I noticed many trends between the top teams and conversely between the teams that crash and burn. Here they are.

Traits of the top teams:

1. At least one hyper-carry style player. Either through mechanics, decision making, or both, every team needs a player who consistently does well.

The term hyper-carry should not be confused with a player who plays to a high level. High level players can carry once they are fed, but hyper-carries, will influence a game in such a way that they can carry a game even when playing from behind. When you try to think of someone who can do this, who comes to mind? Perhaps Doublelift?

2. Objective-orientated play. This is where a lot of teams fall down. Since the most common form of practise is solo queue, objectives are often underrated. Weak teams only play well in the laning phase. A lead during laning phase is good but quite irrelevant without direction into the mid-game.

Top teams maintain impeccable ward coverage to protect objectives. The first dragon/tower is theirs. They’re patient and timely in pushing their advantages.

3. Synergy between the players. Synergy is perhaps the most ambiguous term that is most commonly used to describe team play. Players from top level teams seem to be on the exact same wavelength. Skills, movement, and decisions happen with fluidity.

How many times have you heard a caster say “must have been a lack of communication” when two players overlap stuns or engage at different times? A majority of the time it is down to synergy. During split second plays there is no time to communicate with your team and you have to rely on past experience to identify when your team mate is going to engage or if they are going to lead with their stun. Synergy is a skill unique to every team you play on and is only obtained through practise with your members.

Traits of failed teams:

1. Low-to-average solo queue rating. No matter what argument you put forth, you cannot deny the average individual solo queue rating of top teams. They’re all within the top 1%. I have seen a lot of teams form of gold and plat players who believe team work will prevail above all else but that is like believing that a Ferrari can be made out of wood. It is in your best interest to become the best player you can be individually before seeking a competitive team. Summoner School helps you achieve this.

2. They do not regularly practise together. Any professional sports team has a practice schedule and places importance on team practice. Even in the little leagues of soccer, cricket, or basketball, there was a dedicated day and time for team practice. If you couldn’t make it, you let your coach know and gave a reason. A lot of failing teams do not have the discipline to turn up to team prac regularly. They often will not give a reason which snowballs on other team members (“if he didn’t show up, why should I?”)

3. Expecting too much too soon. If you form a team of diamond players from scratch and throw yourself up against a team that has been together for a year or more, how do you think you’ll fair? You might win the laning phase, but you can never undervalue the experience of a well-established team. It should take at least six months of consistent 3-4 days a week of prac before you even expect to challenge first place. A lot of teams never get to this stage and disband after losing.

Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.Thomas Edison

This concept is explored in depth in one of my previous articles.

With the release of the OCE servers and the Oceanic Season 3 Championship, I have seen a handful of promising teams form as well as a number of highly talented individuals revealed by the ranking system. The Australian E-sports scene has geared up to allow for a thriving industry to unfold. If you are serious about making a career in professional gaming in the future, I implore you to have patience and not to give up easily. It is a hard road and nothing will happen quickly. Persistence is key. If you work hard enough, the outcome will be very rewarding.

Good luck,
Daniel “Kingpin” King

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Do You Make These In-Game League of Legends Mistakes?

League of Legends is like any other skill from a scientific perspective. Each time we learn a new skill, we create new neural pathways through our brain to our central nervous system then muscles. And like a muscle, this pathway can be strengthened. If worked on enough, this pathway becomes so strong that the skill happens instantaneously without conscious thought.

Have you ever become so good at something that you don’t think about it? You have.

Walking is a prime example of a skill the majority of people can do without thought. Sure you think “I’m going to get a drink”, stand up and walk to the fridge. What you don’t think is “I’m going to straighten my legs, bend my right knee slightly… etc etc”.

So how does this apply to League of Legends?

Every little thing you do in-game strengthens various pathways. Whether it be movement, last hitting, using an ability, etc.

These pathways are dedicated to your mechanics and like your fingers on the keys of a piano, should flow easily through your unconscious mind as you play. To consistently weave character movement with ability combos, summoner abilities, and camera control without thought is something all players should strive towards before looking into the meta-game or playing for a serious team.

If you find yourself panicking, losing track of your character, or stutter stepping then you need more practise. You need consistent mechanics through all situations if you want to play at a high level.

Concepts like positioning and decision-making are no different. Like all skills, you have to think about them as you initially do them. This is process is slow. You will feel noob at first. To determine what the right decision is and where exactly “out -of-position” is, you need to make mistakes. Furthermore, once you determine the correct way something is done, you think hard about doing it the first 50 or so times. This process of skill competence is elegantly illustrated by Noel Burch and can be found in UberGiantsBro’s guide found here.

Every game is about you.

Get the correct mentality during a game to focus strengthening your skills. Due to the social nature of LoL there are many distractions that cause you to deviate from personal growth. Every game is about you. View everyone else in the game as champions with four abilities and two summoners.

If you’re in low rating then you can instantly assume your allied champions cannot be depended upon and that your enemies are of equal or greater skill than your own. If someone berates you, ignore them immediately – time spent arguing in chat is time wasted. This is not to say don’t communicate with your team, but rather only communicate through a professional manner using pings and stating objective timers, enemy summoners etc.

I see many people focus on their team as players labelling them as trolls or complaining that they are the cause of their loss. While their observations may be true, they’re not bettering themselves in the process and often spend more time typing than analysing their own play. If you truly had a perfect game and played to a high level but still lost, you should be content. If you died to a fed enemy player who is at fault? Your ally for feeding them? Or you for not factoring a fed enemy into your play-style?

Create a notepad document. Open it up every game you play then read it over before the game starts. Every time you make a mistake, write down what you can do to avoid repeating this mistake.

One problem you may encounter is that you cannot identify your mistakes. This is natural; if you haven’t been exposed to high level play then how can you know? One way is to look at your deaths. It is extremely hard to get less than 3 deaths on average per game. This is really the benchmark that you should set as an individual. Anything over 5 deaths in a game and you should seriously be revising what you do wrong.

Below I’ve listed a few key things many players do not do. Run through them. If they’re all ticks then you’re in a good place:

• Always orb walk – yes even when CSing.
• Weave movement and abilities.
• Get 95% of last hits in lane and under tower.
• Control the lane dynamics by pushing/resetting/freezing the minion wave.
• Trade with enemy opponents properly and punish them if they over-extend.
• Juke skill-shots.
• Know when to disengage and escape on 1 bar of health.
• Bait opponents with a fake disengage.
• Track enemy wards, jungler, objective timers, and summoner abilities.
• Combo abilities using 1 second queue timer to effectively cast 2 spells at the same time.
• Reset auto-attack swing timer with abilities for extra damage.
• Know how to get an early advantage in lane against any lane opponent.
• Use your ally’s mistakes to get kills/objectives.
• Know the most damage efficient builds of every situation.

Identifying the correct way to execute these skills is each a topic in itself. You learn all these skills in Summoner School.

Ultimately, at the top level of play, everything is automatic. From the start of the game, you buy all items you need for level 1 based on your opponents revealed during champion select then walk straight to the area best suited for invasion or protection. From there, everything you do is a product of past experiences. You know what the 6 abilities your lane opponent has, what order they will do them in, and how much damage they do. If you’re saying things like “omg they do so much damage”, “if they didn’t do that, I would of got the kill”, “I’m only losing because of jungler camping me” then you’re still at an early stage.

The only surprises you should encounter are the ones developed by top players to get the better of those on equal footing. This process is one of the ways the game evolves. Eg. The Koreans invented teleport support fiddle with distortion boots. Having tried it in solo queue myself, I managed to surprise many people with plays they hadn’t seen when I climbed through Platinum rating this season. Video can be found here (press HD).

The great thing about playing League of Legends with this mindset is that you don’t have to care if you win or lose. The only thing you have to focus on is whether you successfully executed specific skills correctly or not. When you come across new surprises, it feels good to write them down so you’re prepared the next time around.

I used to have a problem with predicting Sona’s ultimate and often died to it during laning phase. I have fond memories of trying to overcome this by focusing on baiting then flash dodging her ulti in subsequent games.

In a game with such a high skill cap as League of Legends, expect to never stop learning. Every new skill you master bumps you above the rest who do not display that skill. The most valuable skill I have come across is the one that makes all others possible: a self-focused in-game mind.

Good Luck,
Kingpin

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7 Habits Of A Highly Effective LoL Player

Ever wondered what the best LoL players do so effectively that sets them apart from everyone else? Consistency is one of the biggest differentiating factors and apply to all of these habits so keep that in mind as you continue to read. I’m UberGiantsBro and these are 7 Habits Of A Highly Effective LoL Player.

Habit 1. Effective LoL players play at their peak and stop when they start getting tired or start playing sloppy.

Back when I was trialing for the state Futsal squad, they ran us through all of the fitness trials before moving on to the shooting drills. I thought this was weird. Wouldn’t it be better to have us do the shooting first when we were fresh and our legs weren’t tired?

The reason they did this was actually pretty simple. They wanted to see how we handled shooting with tired legs and with our adrenaline pumping, ‘under load’, as it were. They were testing us to see how we would perform with stress and under realistic playing conditions.

The transferable lesson here, as it were, is that it’s crucial to practice on or near a stress level – an arousal level (teehee, arousal) – that is similar to what you would be performing with in a highly competitive scenario or when you think you would be performing your best (think maybe that promo series where you played really well).

stress and arousal

This means that you want to be playing when you are feeling fresh. The ‘optimal arousal level’ and ‘peak time to play’ varies for everyone but generally you’ll find that you perform your best after 1 or 2 games, as these get you in the zone. I’ve found for myself that I tend so play sloppy when I am physically tired near the end of a big day, so I know now to generally just avoid playing late at night when my brain just wants to shut down.

Arousal and stress (a little bit of stress) makes you aware and keeps you alert in game. When you start letting your guard down, well that’s when you start making silly mistakes, slipping up in lane, losing track of the jungler or just flat out feeding. The most effective practice is when you are in the right mind frame.

The most effective practice is when you are in the right mind frame.

So here’s what you do; when you start losing concentration or start getting tired, stop playing LoL. Take a break. You will only play worse and possibly develop bad habits, and the time you spend playing sloppy you could spend doing something that would be more productive like going to bed earlier or doing your chores or something.

Some people like listening to music to get themselves in the zone. Maybe you play your best after a short jog or some other physical exercise to wake you up. Alternatively, you could #getfitwithsnoopeh in between games to keep yourself alert! Check out Snoopeh doing pushups with Froggen on his back.

The important thing to remember is to stop playing when you notice yourself getting tired and playing sluggishly. This is the time where you are most likely to go ‘on tilt’, and tilting is one of the biggest elo killers that you want to avoid.

Habit 2. Great LoL players instinctively look to analyze and correct their own mistakes before thinking about what others did wrong.

I recently did an article on using Immediate Reflection to improve in LoL which I would highly advise you check out if you haven’t already.

I truly believe this is the hallmark of a great LoL player, especially, especially true in League of Legends where the typical reaction to anything bad in a game of LoL is to blame others.

Could you imagine how much more fun to play (and in turn, competitive) League of Legends would be if every player was more concerned with what they could have done better themselves in every situation rather than what others could have done better? What a powerful concept.

Adopt this attitude of self reflection and practice this skill when you play and I guarantee that with time you will be well on your way to reaching your League of Legends goal. For more info on how to take ownership of your mistakes and the beauty of immediate reflection, read more about what I believe to be the secret To improving fast at LoL.

Habit 3. Smart LoL players focus on something specific and put what they learn to the test and practice it until it becomes routine.

Believe it or not, Doublelift – NA’s best ADC and one of the best ADC in the world – used to be ‘just a good ADC’. He always use to be great at cs’ing but he was generally very passive and average at harassing. Focusing on being more aggressive and smarter with his harass is what Doublelift says turned him from a good ADC to a great ADC.Doublelift is the greatest... everyone else is trash

Harassing is a specific skill, and Doublelift had to concentrate especially on this part of his game until he became good at it. It doesn’t just happen, you have to put extra focus on it to improve.

When you find something that is not so great in your game, focus on improving it. Techniques for finding these things include replay analysis (which will be discussed later on) and duoing with another good player.

Near the end of the first LCS split, team Dignitas were facing elimination. Crumbzz (Dignitas’ Jungler) stated in this interview that it was really going in to scrims and practice with intentions of focusing on something specific that carried them through the elimination process. Unfortunately you can’t time stamp with Gamespot videos but the part of the video I’m talking about is at 2 minutes in.

Habit 4. Pro LoL players play as if they are in the lead, but they know their limits.

There are a couple points I want to make with this habit that mostly revolve around a Pro player’s mindset in LoL. Firstly, there’s this whole thing about being positive that can help you play as if you have an advantage from the get-go.

For any of you that are familiar with the Law of Attraction (there’s a wiki link for you), this idea won’t take a lot of effort to get your head around. If you focus on the positive stuff, more positive stuff is likely to happen. Great.

Now how does being positive help you play as if you have an advantage? It basically comes down to knowing that you have the ability to change the flow of the game, even if you are behind.

knowing that you have the ability to change the flow of the game, even if you are behind

It’s the confidence in your own ability as a player and knowing what you can and cannot do. Think about these two mindsets and you’ll see what I mean;

Player A. Uhh he’s 30 cs ahead of me and we’re 8 minutes in. I think this game is over.

Player B. Uhh he’s 30 cs ahead of me and we’re 8 minutes in. It’s k he’s basing now and I might be able to pull some cs back. I’ll try to farm it out and have a bigger impact than him in the teamfights – Malphite is weak early and a beast later on anyway.

Player B has a better mindset, he knows that he scales well and that he has the ability to get back in the game. He is confident in his Malphite pick and that later he can still crush team fights.malphite-coral

Focusing on this keeps him more positive and has an immediate impact on his cs’ing and communication with his team. He is now a positive, unstoppable rock.

My second point is that Pro player’s are confident enough and sure enough of their own ability that they know if the enemy slips up, they will be there to capitalize. They just have to put out enough pressure safely and within their known limits to give their opponent opportunities to slip up.

I played mid against MandatoryCloud” (mid laner for Team Vulcun) and even though I was on my most comfortable champ at the time, Lux, I felt like he was always 5 steps ahead. Yes that is a Swain quote, yes he was playing Swain. The point is that he was confident enough in his play and on his champ that he knew how aggressive he could be while still playing relatively safely.

One of my teammates used to say, “If I can’t play aggressive in my lane, what better am I than these randoms?”

Obviously there’s more to it than just playing flat out aggressive, but the essence of what he was saying is very true. It’s knowing when it’s a good time to play aggressive that is the key. [Smooth transition to next habit, oh yeah]

Habit 5. Switched-on LoL players rarely get greedy, they know when it’s safe to take an advantage and when it’s a dangerous risk.

Ever been caught out farming that one last minion wave before going back to base or trying to take that inhibitor only to be caught with your pants down by Homeguard boots? I know I have, I’m sure you have. HotshotGG has.

Switched-on LoL players rarely get greedy. They take what advantage they can safely. They are confident enough in their own ability that they know they don’t need to take many risks throughout the game to win.

They are confident enough in their own ability that they know they don’t need to take many risks throughout the game to win.

It’s often been said that the team that makes the less mistakes in League of Legends wins. I think this holds considerable truth, and often the majority of mistakes stem from that ‘solo queue greed’ for kills, cs, towers, objectives or whatever.Greed often comes down to knowing what you can do when you’re fed and what you can do when you’re not fed/when a certain enemy is fed. For example, I’ve seen plenty of Singed players farm well and maybe even get a couple kills in their lane, but when it transitions over to a team fight they give up easy kills for free because they think they are indestructible.I recently played a solo queue game which illustrates common solo queue greed perfectly. In this game, the enemy team just got greedy/cocky again and again and it eventually led to their demise. Check out the greatest comeback in solo queue history.

A large portion of not getting greedy is again, knowing your champion and your own ability well enough (experience, practice) to know what you can and cannot do in every scenario. Knowing this will limit the amount of times you get caught being greedy.

Habit 6. The best LoL players use their time efficiently, this includes time allocated specifically for replay analysis.

They focus on one skill at a time if it is lack luster, they focus on one role at a time if the ranked queue allows them, they take time to fix aspects of their game through replay analysis.

Dyrus, when commenting on having a dedicated replay analyst in preparation for All-Stars, said, “It feels like cheating.”

Unfortunately most LoL players don’t have the luxury of a dedicated replay analyst however this doesn’t mean replay analysis shouldn’t be done. Take the time to correct (or even discover) parts of your game that are letting you down.

Go through your replay, preferable straight after you play the game, and actively watch for mistakes that you made. Don’t just sit there and watch it like a movie, you won’t notice much. Here’s your chance to be critical of your play, but don’t get down about how bad you are!

Once you find something that you can work on, put extra effort into focusing on that skill or part of your game until you get better. An example is if you notice yourself missing a lot of last hits under your tower, you might choose to practice pushing out the wave (trimming) better so you don’t have to last hit under the tower so much, or maybe you might concentrate on perfecting your last hitting technique under the tower with that specific champ instead ie. I don’t have AD runes on this champ so I have to hit these ones twice.

Habit 7. The up and coming LoL players learn from resources available to them that speed their way to becoming a better player.

Wouldn’t it be amazing if some high level players took everything they knew about the game and combined it into one super awesome, amazing, ultimate League of Legends guide for your ease of access? Wouldn’t that just speed up your improvement like no other resource?

When I was new to the game, I accessed sites like Mobafire fairly regularly to learn the good builds for my champions. But even then, I didn’t exactly understand why I was building the items that I was as most guides didn’t go into that. At Summoner School you learn the theory behind everything you do.

What is Summoner School? Summoner School is a complete League of Legends guide created by 3 Australian brothers who wanted to share what they’d learned through their years of (sometimes frustrating) solo queue and competitive experience in an easy to access format. These 3 brothers (myself being one of them) all went from being Bronze/Silver level players to Platinum/Diamond level players and now want to help you do the same!

Feel like you’ve missed the boat in terms of having the time to be a highly effective LoL player? Nonsense. League of Legends is just heating up and there is plenty of time for you to achieve your LoL goal. So go check out Summoner School right now, hit me up on Twitter @UberGiantsBro to let me know how you’re finding it and have a great day!

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3 Hidden Killers of Becoming a Good League Player

Following on from my previous article , the three vices that will hold you back from growing as a player include: pride, greed and anger. The act of identifying that you express these traits, as a result of playing League of Legends, will make your growth a lot easier.

Pride

Pride is an interesting concept, it is not necessarily bad in moderation but when it prevents you from realising the truth it will quickly become your worst enemy. The only person that can tell you that you’re bad is yourself. The very first time I supported Doublelift in solo queue he told me I was bad. He died twice in lane and I got the kills after he died and he told me I’m bad. Immediately without even a thought I let my pride get the better of me. I basically told myself “I’m not bad, he’s wrong. He’s not even good”. The first time I played with TheOddOne he told me I threw after he got caught and we got aced 4v5. How do you think I reacted? “WTF IM NOT BAD! YOU GOT CAUGHT!”

It took me a long time to realise, “you know what? I am actually bad”. When I look back at those two cases: Doublelift died because I wasn’t in position trade tanking the enemy ADC’s damage. TheOddOne died because I hadn’t warded the right places for him to maintain jungle control. But it doesn’t take a star player’s word for you to realise you’re bad. Despite many people saying otherwise, the LoL ranking system IS a good indication of skill. It is safe to say if you are not in challenger tier, you are at least some degree of bad.

Greed

Greed will make you play this game for the wrong reasons. Riot has marketed this game in such a way that the things you do give you a great sense of reward. The biggest ones being winning and kills. How much more satisfying is a double kill in lane than killing dragon or a tower. How good do you feel when you get that last win before you go to bed? There are problems with both of these short term rewards. Objectives should always take priority over kills. Kills allow you to take objectives and if you’re chasing an enemy Nidalee for 5 minutes after a team fight then you’re doing it wrong.

If you trade wins for losses in a 1:1 ratio then chances are you don’t care. You get a reward equally as much as you don’t and you’ve probably learnt to not care about losing. This gives rise to the “surrender at 20 I want to start the next game already” mentality. The top players can get to diamond I with as little as 16 losses in 100. That’s a 6.25:1 win:loss ratio therefore approx. 85% of games are winnable (see below)!

Screenshot from Wildturtle’s smurf “Wildturtl”.

Anger

Anger is the most obvious and most limiting trait that you can express. It is well known that people think irrationally when angry. Rage has a common place in competitive play. If you try your hardest and lose, you will get angry. The sad thing about this is that many players channel their rage to their team mates or opponents and create a toxic community. The best thing you can do and should ALWAYS do when you’re angry is detach from the source, cool off, and re-approach it when you’ve calmed down.

If you truly understand the cause of your loss there is little room for anger and it will be very short lived. So when you look back at your last loss, why did you lose? The answer is not “because of my team mates”. The answer is because “You did not carry”. Many mistake carrying as a good K/D/A, although important, it is only a piece of the pie. A more in-depth article can be found here. But believe it or not, 4v5s are absolutely winnable.

Throughout your League of Legends career you will constantly be tested by trolls and players with higher skill than your own. If you remain mindful of these three vices your growth as a player has less chance of stagnation and ultimately your rewards will be much greater.

 

Good luck,

Daniel “Kingpin” King

 

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The Secret To Improving Fast At LoL

If I had to choose one piece of advice to turn an average or below average LoL player to become a platinum or diamond level player, what would it be? Maybe warding more is the answer? Maybe I could tell them that they need to just focus on one role and get really good at that? Maybe being a real ‘team player’ is the ‘secret’ to improving fast at LoL?

All these things are great, but what I have to share with you right now is even more powerful than being cooperative or warding more. This ‘secret’, as it were, could be one of the biggest determining factors between you being stuck in ‘elo hell’ or ‘league hell’ and you achieving your League of Legends goal. This piece of advice turned me from a bronze scrub in season 1 to a diamond level player in season 2.

The secret is owning your mistakes and using Immediate Reflection to improve.

Seems simple on the surface right? But yet it’s not always simple. People in general and gamers especially (LoL players especially!) don’t want to see their imperfections. They don’t want to see that they aren’t the perfect League of Legends player. It’s everyone else’s fault, not mine. I am the best.

introspection

Introspection reflection inspection

Do you think pro players got to where they are now by thinking they are the best? No. They got there by constantly critiquing their own play and using their mistakes to improve.

Bad LoL players are blind to their own mistakes, good players know they made a mistake but they focus more on others mistakes while great LoL players reflect on every play and see what they did well and what they could have done better.

This skill is called Immediate Reflection, Summoner School students would be familiar with this already. I would estimate about 80% of LoL players are in the ‘Unconscious Incompetence’ (see picture below and right) phase of this skill – they are just oblivious to their own mistakes.

fourstagesofcompetence

Noel Burch’s ‘Four Stages of Skill Competence’

Let’s take a look at your average LoL game with a specific (but all too common) scenario. Mid just roamed bot and got a double kill on an overextended bot lane. Immediately the ADC starts cussing his support for not warding the river and his mid lane for not calling MIA. Now, it’s quite possible that both the support and mid misplayed in their own right, but this ADC (who is actually fairly skilled at the game) fails to see his own mistake in poor map awareness. This ADC just missed a good opportunity to improve his game.

Now let’s take a look at the same scenario, but with an ADC who makes use of Immediate Reflection;

Mid just roamed bot and double-killed an overextended bot lane. The ADC thinks to himself, “Oh wow, our river ward just ran out and I didn’t notice. I was too zoned in on my own lane that I didn’t notice this, and that their mid laner went MIA too… I will have to keep a closer eye on the minimap and how long those wards have left.”

The ADC in the first scenario could not see past the mistakes of his teammates and so did not learn anything. The difference in the second scenario is that this ADC looked first to his own play to see what he did wrong and accepted his own mistake, then reflected on what we he could have done/should do next time.

But it gets better. The real beauty of Immediate Reflection is that you can use it all the time. In other words, even though League of Legends is a team game, you can always look at what you yourself did right/wrong in each scenario and what you could do better next time.

Although Saintvicous had had a few drinks, he made a good point about admitting your own mistakes. The video that I linked there also serves as an interesting case study for blame, although it goes on and on a bit. Take it with a grain of salt!

The part that I had difficulty with in season 1 (and even into season 2) was owning my mistakes. I sort of knew when I had made a mistake but I was always too consumed with other player’s mistakes to realise that I needed to admit that I could improve – it was always someone else’s fault more than my own. Once I learned to look at my own mistakes and admit them before anything else, it was like the elo dam was released. By the end of season 2 I had reached 2300 elo.

Once I learned to look at my own mistakes and admit them before anything else, it was like the elo dam was released.

The funny thing about Immediate Reflection is that you use it all the time in real life without realising it, everyone does. But why is it that when it comes to League of Legends, everyone is just so bad at it? Why is everyone so reluctant to look at their own mistakes before dishing out the blame to others?

I believe it’s to do with what I said earlier in that most LoL players would rather look at how ‘bad’ the players around them are than focus on their own play and use Immediate Reflection to get better.If you really are better than the players that you are matched with then you will ryze through the leagues eventually. Stop using other player’s mistakes as an excuse and learn to own up to your mistakes.

So how do you own your mistakes and how do you effectively use Immediate Reflection? It’s really not that hard. Like most skills, it just takes practice.

When something bad happens in your game, focus on the role that you had in it and what you did wrong. Don’t do what the majority of LoL players would do and blame others – this gets you nowhere. From here, admit that it was you that made the mistake, not anyone else. Ownership is important because it shows yourself that you have control over what happened. Once you admit it, you can think about what you could have done better or what you can do better for next time.

So now you know how to own up to your mistakes and use Immediate Reflection to improve, start using it! This skill is invaluable for your LoL goal, and I guarantee you that if you focus on improving this skill, you will improve fast at LoL. For more skills like this one, check out the ultimate League of Legends guide where you can find all the skills and tips you need to carry yourself out of ‘League hell’.

Thank you for reading, follow me on twitter @UberGiantsBro and all the best in solo queue!

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