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jungle-win

I’ve begun to notice a heavy shift in the importance of Jungler presence this Season. Something I always preached back when I was writing articles and making videos in Season 2, was that the Jungler completely dictated the pace of the game, and if you had a good Jungler you would most likely win. When Season 3 started I finally thought this trend was dead and that Junglers would basically become another laner with the increased gold from the jungle. As always, people learn to adapt and can now micromanage the jungle to be able to farm it efficiently while still keeping lane pressure. Ok, so what does this mean? What is all this about Junglers winning 65% more games?

Dragon Control and Why it’s More Important than Ganking.

With the passing of the LCS Superweek an interesting infographic was posted that showed which team won based on the objectives they completed first. In my opinion the most interesting statistic was that in 26/40 games the winning team took the first Dragon. Now, the other two similar statistics are that 24/40 teams that got firstblood and took the first tower won, however I think these are less important to look at for soloqueue. The reason I think firstblood/towers are less important in soloqueue is because these stats come from the LCS competitive scene and the current popular strategy is to 2v1 laneswap, three-man gank the one-person lane, and then kill the tower. Since 2v1 lanes are a rare occurrence in soloqueue, we will only be focusing on Dragon and why it’s so important.

Noxian Guillotine Firstblood in Soloqueue is a Coin Toss.

While ganking is important as a Jungler, getting your team first blood is not going to increase your win-percentage by that much in soloqueue. You need to aim for something more convincing. We should also compare “competitive scene firstblood” to “soloqueue firstblood.” In the competitive scene, the person that gets firstblood is coordinating with four other people who he can communicate with and better apply his 400g advantage. In soloqueue getting someone firstblood is great, but there is a good chance they don’t know how to effectively apply that kind of an advantage, and they are probably not going to try and coordinate their newfound power to help the other players. It’s definitely a 50/50 thing in soloqueue and if at the end of one of my articles you didn’t learn anything more valuable than a coin toss, well then my articles wouldn’t be worth reading.

35% of Pro’s Lose After Giving Up Dragon. Imagine That Number in Soloqueue.

The 26/40 statistic stands out to me because it is a pretty convincing statistic for the competitive scene. Dragon is a nice objective but it has never seemed as game-defining as getting the first Baron (27/37 [16/17 in EU] games won), yet it yields a 65% higher chance to win the game. If the statistic is indeed consistent and 35% of PROFESSIONAL teams can not overcome a first Dragon deficit, think of how large that statistic would grow for soloqueue. In my experience, Junglers in soloqueue put too much emphasis on ganking lanes and not enough on securing Dragon. What is better: 400g for one person on your team (+200g with an assist) or 950g for your whole team? How many times have you seen a Jungler complain “You’re all pushed I can’t gank!” Instead of complaining, go buy a pink ward, clear Dragon, and then get bot and mid to help you kill it!

DragonSquare People Understand Dragon is Important and it Prompts Stupid Decisions.

If all your lanes are pushing, they are winning, so why not snowball their gold advantage? Also, if at any point your mid or bot lanes secure a kill GO DO DRAGON! Think of how difficult it is for the opposing team to respond in a timely fashion if you coordinate pushing in your mid and bot lanes at the same time and collapsing to Dragon. First off they have to decide if losing 6+ minions worth of gold and exp is worth stopping you. Then they have to determine if they can possibly steal it. Then they have to coordinate collapsing on you from two different sides so that you don’t 4v1 their collapsing mid or 4v2 their collapsing bottom, or 4v2/4v3 if their jungler is even in the area and is also aware of what’s happening. You are creating so much chaos for their team and creating so many opportunities for them to make a mistake for you to capitalize on. It is so incredibly difficult for a team to come back from not only losing a Dragon, but also losing one or two Champions in an uncoordinated collapse, and then that resulting in them losing a mid or bot tower because you are now four strong and pushing. If this happens and you get Dragon and a Tower, you get a combined 1700 global gold for your team. That’s a hard advantage to lose with.

Snowball Queue.

The overall point I want Junglers to take away from this is that you are an extra appendage for the rest of your team. You are four extra skills and two extra summoners for each lane, you are extra eyes on the map, and you are responsible for getting the snowball rolling. Gank lanes, but if you can’t gank for them then ward for them. If your team has wards use the vision to your advantage and secure global objectives. Don’t just sit in the jungle the whole time, farm and think you are going to carry the game. Tell your mid to push their lane while you go bottom to help them push, then collapse on the Dragon. You need to try to create situations for the other team to overreact and make mistakes so you can capitalize. If you start to adapt this into your normal ganking routine I think it is safe to say you will win 65% more games, and I would actually say even higher.

Love, Dcgreen

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Previous “Glory of the Climb” Articles:

Making Sense of Season 3

Dominion: Helping You To Win More Lanes and Games

Developing Your Killer Instincts: Why to be Aggressive in Season 3

Working With Your Team to Win

Countering Health with DFG

Reviewing the New “League System”

Why Losing is Just as Important as Winning

The Stale Meta: Intro + Top 5 Junglers

The Stale Meta: Intro + Top 5 AP Mids

The Stale Meta: Intro + Top 5 Top Laners

The Stale Meta: Top 5 AD Carries

The Stale Meta: Top 5 Supports

The Stale Meta: Poke

 

team

Ok, so my rating has plateaued as of late and I have had a hard time finding something to write about. Winning a game for eleven rating and then losing a game immediately after for fourteen makes it hard to stay motivated, so I haven’t even played that many ranked games since my previous entry. I peaked at 1831 rating and was two wins away from Plat and I was so happy. Then I had some bad games and plummeted all the way back into the 1700’s. Now my fail safe for winning games was just getting Fizz in mid and trying to carry and I learned even if I won my lane and helped influence the other lanes positively that I was not always able to carry. I realized that I was putting too much responsibility on my myself and not Working With My Team.

They are your team till you Win or Lose. Make the Best of it.

When you get put into a lobby with a team the first thing you want to try and do is peacefully establish who is going where. It is important to take the high road if you get a bad egg. If someone is “mid or afk” just give them mid and ignore them and try to collaborate with the other three people who want to actually win. From here you want to try and influence your team to pick champions that will compliment your champion. For example when I pick Fizz I ask the jungler or top laner to pick a champion with strong initiation potential like Malphite, Amumu, J4, Nocturne, Sejuani, Xin Zhao, etc, because as an assassin I need team fights to be started for me so I can take advantage of the chaos and gib someone in the back line. Nothing makes an opposing team scatter like a Malphite or Amumu ultimate and once I started doing this I began winning more games again. Remember, people want to win and as someone in a solo lane (a carry) you should be able to influence people to pick around your ability to carry.

teamwork

The other thing to realize is that your team is YOUR TEAM till you win or lose. If you start fighting in champion select and no one dodges you are going to be with them for twenty minutes at least. If someone starts losing their lane don’t yell at them or even say anything at all, just let them figure stuff out and pull themselves together. Remember, yelling at them isn’t going to make them vanish out of your game. They are there until the end, so make the best of what you have. I have seen so many games where top lane dies six times and then they will stroll into some team fight super late and clean up and no one pays attention to them because they think they are underfarmed and the dude gets a triple kill and all of a sudden your team is back in contention. But if you yell at that top guy all game and he zones out because everything he reads in chat is garbage or flaming then you make the game that much harder. WORK WITH YOUR TEAM AND DON’T SAY ANYTHING IF YOU DON’T HAVE ANYTHING NICE TO SAY!

ELE – EVERYBODY LOVE EVERYBODY!



There will be games where your team straight up loses you the game.

Tough shit man. If the pressure of losing or relying on four other people to win a game is too much for you there are plenty of other games that you can play on Facebook where you can simultaneously post statuses about how you feel and pictures of the slashes you just made on your wrists. But if you fancy yourself a fucking warrior and the only time you cry is at the end of the movie The Grey, starring Liam Neeson, because that movie is fucking intense, then queue up again and try your luck. Gaining ELO isn’t about win streaks, it’s about keeping your composure and winning more games than you lose in the long run.

Love, Dcgreen

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Killer Instincts

 

Greetings Summoners, today’s article is going to be the importance of aggression in Season 3! Because I consider aggression to be an advanced tactic I am going to briefly go over a few prerequisite conditions I recommend you have under your belt before you try and secure that ever-rewarding First Blood.

First - “Main” a specific Champion: It does not matter which Champion as long as it’s your favorite, you have A TON of experience on them and always have fun playing them! I used to think in soloqueue it was important to have a diverse champion pool so I could play any lane decently well and I am here to tell you: that’s wrong if you want to carry your team. When you get into a ranked lobby just ask nicely for the lane you want, I always say “Mid plz :),” followed by “I understand I am 4th/last pick and will fill if someone above me wants mid.” This resulted in me getting Fizz for about 16 games in a row. If you’re lower priority pick and someone else calls the lane just let them have it and hope they are as determined as you are to carry; remember it’s good to build a friendly and cooperative rapport with your team right from the start to reduce inner-team turmoil. Also if you lose the game don’t blame it on you not being able to carry; losses happen and LoL has proven time and time again that it’s a game of perfect storms, sometimes shit storms. The worst thing you can do if you lose is queue for another game and then try to force your new team into giving you your desired lane by saying “mid or afk,” or “I am playing Karthus regardless of what lane.” Just be patient and play what roles you are given until you eventually get to carry with your favorite Champ.

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Second – Learn Combat:I recommend you read my Dominion article and play Dominion on your Main Champion for about 10 games to really learn the ins and outs of their combat. For example, do you know what is it like to fight an AP champion 1 on 1, an AD champion, are you good at all-ins, are they good at all-ins, can you chase reliably well, do you do more burst or sustained damage, how much does your power go up at levels 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 11, 13, 16, and 18, do you always max the same spell first or does your kit offer variety, what items spike your power and are considered your “core,” is it smart to build against your lane or always build your core, are you front line, are you back line, are you a carry, are you an assassin, are you support, do you offer utility to your team, are you the quarterback or are you the receiver, can you roam efficiently, when is it best to buy level 1 boots, level 2 boots, boot enchant and which one, can you initiate a fight or should you sit back and wait, what should your positioning be like in team fights, etc. There’s probably a slew of other things you should know but you get the idea. It’s a long list and it makes a difference in your success of killing someone.

FB

Third – Stick to your Guns: Make a plan, stick to it and never doubt yourself. After playing a handful of games I realized that Fizz is an incredible duelist in the early levels. He has great melee harass with his Seastone Trident DoT, he has 2 gap closers, he can negate an enemy spell with his Playful/Trickster, he has a slow, he can effectively go 9 defensive masteries, his passive reduces auto attack damage (minions and champions) and allows him to ignore unit collision (his passive also increases damage reduction at level 4 making this a potent “all-in” level). With all this combat knowledge (again see my Second point) I started to develop plans around early all-ins around level 3 and 4 to snowball my lane. I created rune pages with all “flat” runes instead of “per level” runes to maximize my early stats, and even tailored my masteries for early game instead of late game. Using this plan got me a free kill in lane about 60% of the time, the other 40% we would trade deaths, or I would force them to go back to heal. The games where I killed them and lived though the lane would forever be in my control because I know once Fizz gets Sheen his damage spikes dramatically and with the increased mana you always have enough to devote to harassing and escaping if the jungler comes (which he fucking will… every god damn time lol). Just know that your lane will receive a lot of jungler attention if your aggression is successful.

masteries

So Why be Aggressive in Season 3?

The Jungler won’t help early on: Referencing one of my previous articles, one of the most drastic changes in Season 3 is the new jungle. Junglers take much more damage now and there is a greater risk than before trying to gank a lane after getting blue and red buff because they are typically at ~50% hp. Because of this risk Junglers will gank less early which means you have a solid 4-5 minutes undisturbed in lane with your opponent that you need to capitalize on, but remember you are also less likely to receive help from your own jungler. Also most starting builds yield an early ward which makes it even harder for the jungler to get to lanes undetected. What this means for you is that you now have to become more self-sufficient when it comes to winning your lane. In Season 2 you could play passively for a while and just wait for your jungler to come and get you a kill, snowballing your lane. Now that the Jungler spends more time clearing and puts more emphasis on farming camps, you have to rely on 1 v 1 skill to win.

jungle

Winning Lane Early Sets You Up to Carry: If you capitalize early and come out ahead because of your aggression you can control your lane and then begin to control other lanes. When you kill your lane opponent you typically get 300-600 more gold than them (depending on First Blood and how many waves you get to free farm), you get 1-2 levels on them and you can push against them with impunity. When you push people to towers (which forces them to sit and farm or else they lose much needed exp/gold following you) you have roughly ~25 seconds to invade their jungle, gank other lanes, or pressure global objectives like Dragon and Baron which over-time will make their team weaker than your team. Also as I mentioned above you will draw jungle attention to your lane which allows the rest of your team to play aggressive also!

The Element of Surprise: People are still not used to aggression (especially calculated aggression). A lot of players are still stuck in the ways of Season 2 which makes them perfect prey for your killer instincts! They passively farm and spend a lot of time typing trash to the jungler about his lack of early presence. They are that much less likely to expect you to go all-in so early, pressuring them to make unexpected decisions and mistakes. If you read my first article and you are also using a rarely played champion, like Wukong or Fiora, people are that much less likely to react correctly (ask yourself do you even know Fiora’s passive, Q, W, E, and R? Exactly!). Once you kill someone unexpectedly you also have a chance to put them on tilt mentally. Watching your champion die before your eyes, as you have no idea how to react, is infuriating! The psychological part of the game then starts to sink in and you can almost completely destroy someone’s ability to play and make rational thoughts if you make their head spin fast enough 😉

I recommend all summoners that want to be successful in Season 3 to develop your killer instinct and constantly apply pressure to your lane. Make you opponent afraid of you and use that fear to carry your team. Til next time may your ELO rise as you experience the Glory of the Climb 🙂

Love, Dcgreen

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Dominion

Greetings Summoners! Today’s article is going to be about the hidden gem to improving your combat skills, Dominion. Dominion received a lot of hype and attention during its release but that attention almost immediately switched back to Summoner’s Rift, as that is the format people enjoy most and the game is balanced around; today Dominion has almost been forgotten as a format as it is played less than custom ARAMs. Despite the statistics and trends I am here to tell you that Dominion is one of the best formats you can play to improve your skills as a player and by playing 1-2 games of Dominion a day you can raise your ELO.

Dominion: Good for More than Just Skin Spotlights!

Have you ever heard or been advised by friends, or even pro players on stream, that you should warm up by playing a Normal game before you queue for ranked? Makes sense, even athletes warm up so why shouldn’t you? I wholeheartedly agree with warming up before playing ranked, but instead of playing a game of Summoner’s Rift, why not play Dominion? Unless you have 40 extra minutes to kill, enjoy farming for 10-20 minutes, like risking not getting the champion/lane you want, and like winning games of SR that aren’t worth rating, then go ahead and queue up for a Normal game. If I have your attention though, consider everything Dominion provides!

There’s little to no farming which means all your time in game is going to be spent casting spells on champions and fighting people to the death; you get MORE passive gold and experience which means you’re guaranteed to get at least 2 core items + boots per game despite how bad you might do and at least level 18. You can instalock any champ you want and people don’t rage at you; you’re also almost guaranteed to play whatever champ you have been thinking about all day at school, work, or those 5 minutes it took to start up your computer. Ever queued for a game and been like “OMFG I AM GONNA PLAY THE SHIT OUTTA SOME FIZZ RIGHT NOW!” and then you realize you are last pick and you have to play Support; which is fine support is actually fun now, but you really wanted to play that certain champ. Again think Dominion (Fizz is never taken from me). The best part about Dominion is, win or lose, you are always guaranteed to have a fun time! Sure its more fun to win, you even get your 1st win of the day bonus (200+ IP) if you do, but how can you complain when you got to spend 20 minutes on your favorite champion melting everyone’s face off? Dominion is the most stress free and rewarding game mode to play in League hands down, which makes it the best mode to play for warming up!

You Told Me It Would Make Me Win My Lane?

The way Dominion works is 4 people go for the Windmill(top) and 1 person goes to capture the bottom node and fight the other person in bottom lane; essentially top is a 4v4 and bottom is a 1v1. Eventually the game will get wild and people will start going everywhere, but this is the meta for about the first 5 minutes of Dominion. If you want to get better at winning your lane then you go bottom. It’s typically a bit more boring than going top but it will help you hone your dueling skills which are the most important in lane. With the jungle tweaks of season 3 it is less likely for the jungler to gank early and ruin your lane for you/assist you, so you need to become more self-reliant on winning your lane by yourself. This means you need to know how far you can push your champion in a 1v1 situation against specific match-ups and in Dominion you encounter tons of different champions in the bottom lane, which increases your champion knowledge and match-up versatility.

For Example: If someone tried to counter-pick my Fizz mid with Xin Zhao (which happened the other day) I would know how to fight him because I have faced a Xin bottom in Dominion. He scales a lot better than Fizz after about level 7 but can’t do anything against an all in at early levels. Also if you fight him in a creep wave and you Playful/Trickster his 3rd attack of ThreeTalonStrike he will auto-target and use the knock-up attack on a minion, then you land and continue doing a ton of damage to him. Now how would you know something like that unless you play mid vs Xin Zhao all the time? You wouldn’t! But because you play Dominion and are more well versed vs random match ups than the average player you can use this knowledge to win your lane more often. The same idea applies to regular lane match-ups as well obviously.

Oh before I forget, there are a lot of instances when you are going to be fighting someone in bottom lane on a tower, so Dominion also helps you develop another important lane skill: Tower Diving. You may also get better at remembering to chug potions while in combat 🙂

xin

You Told Me It Would Make Me Win My Game?

Ok so if the bottom lane of Dominion helps you win your lane then… you guessed it! Top can help you win more games. The top portion of Dominion is an all out brawl; 8 people all hopped up on moth balls and speed shrines are fighting to capture the windmill! Its basically a full-fledged team fight every time you respawn and run top, sometimes there’s even a tower shooting at you! Basically to be good at Dominion you need to be able to capture the Windmill and to do that you need to be alive, or have someone on your team be alive after all the fighting. Now if you play a squishy assassin, like Fizz, its not smart to Urchin Strike their Garen before anyone else on your team engages and get insta-killed; this is a common mistake average players make all the time. Timing, patience, positioning, and opportunity are skills Dominion can help you develop; multiple times in the same game! In how many team fights do you have the luxury of making mistakes in an average game of Summoner’s Rift, before the opposing team gets too strong and just flat out wins the game; one, maybe two if you were ahead?

In a 20 minute game of Dominion you can fight numerous multi-champion skirmishes and learn how your champion functions within those situations. 1v2’s, 2v2’s, 2v3’s, 3v4’s, 4v4’s, 4v5’s, and even 5v5’s sometimes! Yes, sometimes you will get overrun, focused, or kited around a tower, but other times you will play your balls off, learn to rely on your teammates, understand positioning, learn how to do damage and assassinate while being safe, and even carry the game! The best part is you will be having a blast, but the most important thing is that you didn’t need to deal with the normal Summoner’s Rift bullshit: fighting with people in champ select, worrying about being counterpicked, farming to get items or levels to reach your peak, or wasting 30-60 minutes of your time!

Dominion allows you to play the champions you want, improve your dueling and teamfight skills, utilize your time, warm up, and have fun! So the next time you hit the “PLAY” button, make sure to switch modes from Classic to Dominion and have fun! I guarantee if you adapt this outlook you will see your ELO go up 🙂

Love, Dcgreen

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domi fizz

 

glory banner 3

 

Hello Summoners! My name is Dcgreen and I am a League of Legends beta veteran and avid soloqueue grinder. After much toil in Season 2 I managed to attain a 2k rating before the seasons end, despite getting to 1900 and dropping all the way back to 1450. Along my journey I learned a lot of tricks and strategies about soloqueue which I used to get back on top of my game. With Season 3 shaking everything up I am here to provide advice on what I am doing to gain rating and what you can do to get a grasp on the monstrous amount of changes that have hit the Fields of Justice!

soloqueue elo

The Best Change in Season 3!

So Season 3 brought forth a sea of changes. After the dust has settled and Black Cleaver’s been nerfed 5 times, it’s time to make sense of everything. Hands down I think the best change to come with season 3 is the nerf to boots coupled with the additional movespeed all champions received. This is a great change because it opens up a variety of different starting builds each champion can go instead of forcing them into “boots/3 pots,” which in turn makes a handful of new champions viable. Lots of melee champions who had a hard time surviving the laning phase with only 3 potions are starting to reemerge!

Champions to Maximize your ELO gains!

I encourage anyone looking to gain ELO to start playing Akali, Fiora, Fizz, Galio, Kassadin, Pantheon, Poppy, Talon, Trundle, Tryndamere, Volibear, Wukong, and Zed in solo lanes. Because of how rare these champions used to be back in season 2 people are unfamiliar with how to lane against them, leaving them vulnerable to make lots of mistakes for you to capitalize on. With a Crystaline Flask, 5 hp/mana potions, and a ward; any of these heroes can survive the laning phase as well as be protected against jungle ganks, allowing them to achieve a farmed midgame state and dominate! From there it is just up to your individual skill to be able to capitalize against your opponents inexperience and snowball your lane.

My Personal Experience and the Reasoning Behind It!

Personally I have been playing a lot of Fizz and have set up my runes and masteries for early “all-ins” against the enemy mid laner as early as levels 2 and 3! According to LoLKing, Fizz is played in about 4-5% of games; compared to champions like Diana or Evelyn who are played in about 15% of games. This means my enemy is 66% more unfamiliar of what Fizz does than if I was playing Diana or Eve, which explains why I get firstblood so often 😉 I encourage everyone to dust off their old favorite champions and experiment with new builds and strategies and catch your opponents by surprise; just make sure you make an extra rune page with yellow armor runes incase you run into any Talons/Pantheons 😛

(notice average kills per game: 11.2!)

Fizz2

About the Author:

I have been playing League since closed beta where I would consistently place in the top 200 elo. I took a break from League when Stracraft 2 came out but returned shortly after and peaked at about 1650 rating in Season 1. During Season 2 I got into LoL writing in when I was hired by Elementz to do esports coverage for ReignofGaming.net. Eventually I was scouted by Curse who asked me to write for LoLPro.com to help generate buzz during its launch. Through my work at LoLPro, Curse felt confident giving me the opportunity to manage ReignofGaming.net as it was newly relaunched under their brand. I worked on ReignofGaming for 5 months developing content for Curse including a video series I created/produced called, “Game of Throwns.” Eventually my contract with Curse expired and I put my time back into grinding soloqueue where I eventually managed to achieve a peak rating of 2016 as season 2 ended. Now with the writing opportunity that TSM is providing me I am looking to again create helpful content for players looking to improve their game, rating, and fun while playing League of Legends. I am striving for Diamond rating this season and am here to provide you with tips and advice on how you can improve your game.