Friday, October 5, 2012

Gaming - League of Legends Basic Strategy

League of Legends

The following is a guide for the basic strategies in the game League of Legends, and is meant for people who have very little exposure to the game and want some direction. This game is in the MOBA genre which means Multiplayer online battle arena. The goal of the game is to take down the Nexus or main base of the opposing players main base.

Overview of the Basic Metagame

This is not by any means a commentary on advanced plays which is far more complex than this but this is a starting guide for the basic ideas on the most standard of compositions in League of Legends.

AD Carry

Who is the AD Carry?
The AD carry is characterized by a character who has strong attack damage potential, famous examples include Ezreal, Graves, Ashe, etc. These characters for the most part are ranged, and are put in the bottom lane.

What defines the AD Carry?
AD carries build almost universally the same items, with a few devations. The "core set" of these items are Infinity Edge, Phantom Dancer, Last Whisper, and Bloodthirster. This combination of items gives you the most sustained damage out of anyone else in the game, which means you are the most capable of taking objectives in the game. This include the towers located in each lane which grants you entire team gold, the inhibitor which grants the ability to spawn super minions, dragon which also grants your entire team gold, baron which grants your entire team even more gold than dragon and a buff, and ultimately the nexus which wins you the game.

The number of objectives taken combined with the amount of gold and the positioning of the minion waves determine the state of the game, which allows you to know who is currently winning or losing the game. Objectives give you current time and map control, gold is pure strength, and minion waves determine future time and map control.

Reason for Positioning?
The reason why they are in the bottom lane is because of the location of the first objective, which is the dragon located at the bottom right pit. As stated before the dragon when killed gives a gold boost to everyone on your team so this is where most team fights happen.

Role in the Team Fight?
You are the most important character on the team in the team fight, almost always. It is worth it for your allies to sacrifice themselves to keep you safe because once you are fully built you have by far the most sustained damage which is necessary to win the fight. As such you must try to keep things as easy as possible on your allies by being very careful not to get caught as the enemies can immediately take objectives such as towers if you die since they cannot win a fight on open ground without you in the late game.

Additional Notes:
AD Carry must be with a support, due to both the champions chosen for this role and the amount of gold it takes to become fully built, the AD Carry is one of the weakest champions in the early and mid stages of the game, only surpassed in weakness by the support. As such it is usually preferred to get minion kills to get more gold over roaming around the map.
Also since you are in a two person lane, you must get as much gold as possible, that is the goal since your strength is dependent on your items not your level. If your support is taking your kills kindly ask them not too as it is detrimental to the entire team if you are weakened.


Who is the Support?
The support is characterized by a character whose strengths are characterized almost completely by their abilities. They are the best at powering someone up, or threatening somebody in a postioning/status effect way. Some famous examples are Soraka, Sona, and Taric.

What defines the Support?
The entire reason the support exists is to make sure the ad carry survives and can gain an advantage. The AD Carry is so weak you must babysit him throughout the entire laning phase, and in the teamfight. Since your strengths are in your skills, which do status effects, or strengthening of an ally through a heal, something like this, you don't need very much gold, so DO NOT LAST HIT IF THE AD CARRY IS AROUND. It hurts your team very badly. If he is not there, go ahead and last hit, get that gold but do not gimp your ally in any way. In fact your entire reason for existing is to protect him. Buy wards so that you have vision on the map so you can protect the AD Carry from ganks, and to get vision of the map so you know when and where your team should be fighting. You pretty much call the shots in the game by letting your team know where other people are.

Reason for Positioning?
The AD Carry is with you.

Role in the Team Fight?
Your job is as usual protect the ad carry, or do whatever ability enhancing effects you can on your allies, and mess up your enemies, namely anyone who comes near the ad carry is stopped by you. Not every AD Carry has mobility so keep an eye on him at all times.

Additional Notes:
Your items in general fall into two categories. Items that gain you gold over time just by existing like philosopher's stone, and heart of gold, or items that benefit everyone on the team. As I said you don't need to deal damage on your own, so buy aura items like Aegis of the legion, Frozen Heart, and Shurelya's reverie to speed up your allies. Though once again there is quite a bit of variation here.

AP Carry

Who is the AP Carry?
The AD carry is characterized by a character who has strong attack magic damage and are very bursty, famous examples include Morganna, Annie, Ahri etc. These characters for the most part are ranged, and are put in the middle lane.

What defines the AP Carry?
AP carries in terms of builds vary far more than the AD carry, but again they still have their core items, namely Doran's Rings, Rabaddon's Deathcap, and Void Staff. They are characterized in particular by their strength in the early mid game, namely level 6-12 or so, and their ability to quickly clear minion waves. At this point in the game, they should be the strongest character in the game, and more importantly in a bursty manner. The reason the burst is important is because this means that they can gank, which means go to another lane to kill a champion. The quick clearing of minion waves means that they can go to another lane without losing much gold in the form of minion kills, and they should capitalize on this because they are the strongest champion at this point, usually. There are counterexamples like Ryze who just want to keep on farming but usually this is the case.

Reason for Positioning?
The reason why they are in the middle lane is because it is by definition the safest location for a solo champion. The distance to your tower is very short so you can retreat, and as an ap mid you want both gold and xp to become the strongest character in the game asap. It also lets you move about the map very freely, second only to the jungler

Role in the Team Fight?
Your job varies depending on your skills. However, in general you usually have some form of aoe, so your goal is to burst down the squishy champions which means the opposing ap carry, ad carries, support, not to do things to the bruisers and tanks, unless you are keeping them off the ad carry. If you have the capability to keep people off others with crowd control like a stun, prioritize protecting your ad carry above dealing damage usually.

Additional Notes:
As I said, the builds and roles vary quite a bit with your champion, I suggest visiting mobafire or team solomid to get a more accurate idea of what you should be doing.


Who is the Bruiser?
The Bruiser is characterized by a character who is strong overall. Famous examples include Darius, Rumble, and Jayce. These characters usually go to the top lane by themselves.

What defines the Bruiser?
The builds here vary far more than those above. Refer to guides at mobafire and solomid to figure out what items to get. However, they all have some common features. The Bruiser, should be a combination of survivability and damage, with a good harass mechanism. They should be so strong in fact that in the late mid game around level 12+, they become the strongest champion over that of the AP Carry and in general maintain that role in overall strength, though in the late game, they lose out in the specific roles, such as burst damage from the AP Carry, and sustained damage in the AD Carry.

Reason for Positioning?
The reason why they are in the top lane is because it is the farthest away from anything, but also dangerous. Like the bottom lane, the distance to your tower is very far so overextending while in the top lane is devastating. Not only that, since you are so far away from the first objective dragon, if you mess up, things stay messed up. Your allies usually don't have the time to help you unless some advantage elsewhere is gained. However, since you are the bruiser, you are so good overall stat and skillwise that you should be safe from ganks as long as you plan appropriately and recognize potential dangers.

Role in the Team Fight?
Your job varies a lot, often you can initiate, start a team fight with either an ability or by just running in there, if you are the super tanky type of top character. But also since you are survivable, it is often your job to finish people off. After you become free to roam, you are able to just go around and kill people, towers don't deter your very much if your enemy is low, you can run in there take the hits and get out because your the bruiser and have as much gold and xp as the AP Carry except you don't have responsibilities other than getting gold.

Additional Notes:
As I said, the builds and roles vary quite a bit with your champion, again I suggest visiting mobafire or team solomid to get a more accurate idea of what you should be doing.


Who is the Jungler?
The Jungler is characterized by a character who is strong and tough super early on level 1-3 and have good ganking potential. Popular examples include Lee Sin, Warwick, and Skarnor. These characters are all very good at punishing champions for being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

What defines the Jungler?
Jungler's vary a ton in every which way. They can be AP, AD, hybrid, tanky, what have you. It totally varies and you definitely need way more information. Jungling needs its own description, and requires a lot of knowledge about the game. I don't advise this position for new players. They all share two common goals, and one common summoner spell though. They always have smite. Even if you can clear the minions in the jungle without it, get smite, the time you save is worth it because you need to be everywhere.

Reason for Positioning?
The reason the Jungler exists is to get the free gold of minions in the jungle, and to secure map control over the red and blue buff. Most junglers require blue buff to quickly clear the rest of the jungle, but once you reach a point where your items are strong enough you secure blue buff for your AP Carry so that the mana regen and coolodown reduction will let them dominate the middle lane if their opponents lack blue buff. Also you are the handyman of the team, the fixer. Whenever someone is in trouble you are there to fix it. Top lane got ganked? Go there and hold till he gets back, bottom lane pushed too far back? Go there and try to kill them or just make them run away, mid lane getting a little to greedy? PUNISH HIM. However, make sure to keep on killing those minions in the jungle so that you are strong enough to actually do something.

Role in the Team Fight?
EXTREMELY VARIABLE, you must read a guide in order to figure it out, or have a lot of previous experience in which case you don't need my advice.

Additional Notes:

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