Simple Things People SHOULD Know by Level 30
Disclaimer: Very Long Thread. If you want to just see my points, they are in Bold.
Everyone starts off as a newb. It takes time to get the hang of the game. I understand this, but people should get better over time. This doesn’t seem to be the case with some people. There are sometimes I see level 30s that make such basic mistakes that it makes me want to cry.
I’ve decided to make a few guidelines that I believe should be followed in MOST situations. As always, you can never quite predict how a lane will go because of character match ups, but there are some things that remain true at all times.
If you disagree with anything that I say here please state why and not just “you’re wrong”. I’m open to criticism as I know I’m not perfect.
Learn it. This wins games. It's how to get gold and keep yourself safe. This is one of the most essential things that separates baddies from good players. If you don't believe me then go watch some high ELO streams. This is something they all have in common.
Last Hitting is pretty simple. All it means is that you DO NOT attack the enemy minions constantly. You should wait until the enemy minion is at low health, low enough that one hit will kill them. This is the only time you should attack a minion.
Last hitting minions is better for many reasons:
1. Since you’re minions will die faster, you will be pushed slightly back every time, giving you the safety of your tower
2. Since you’re not auto-attacking you can have complete control over your attacks. With auto-attacking there’s always the chance that you needed that auto-attack half a second before or after to get the killing blow on a minion or champion.
3. It gets you more gold. Auto attacking will get you 1-2 minions a wave out of sure luck. Ranged DPS can get more, only because of a higher base damage. If you watch what you’re attacking every minion every wave should be accounted for by either you or your lane partner.
“But good sir, my tower eats all the minions when I get pushed back!”
“Oh little Timmy, it only takes some patience and a right click.”
Tower Last Hitting
Here’s how to get last hits on minions if you’re pushed back to your tower.
It takes 3 hits to kill a melee minion. It takes 2 hits to kill a ranged minion. Knowing this will allow you to time your attacks to get those last hits.
The following procedure works when you are solo.
For melee minions:
Let the tower shoot them twice. This puts them as a sliver of health. Most DPS champs and Tanks can finish them off with one hit. I’ve have noticed however that some can’t do it. Mages have a harder time doing it because of a lower base attack. You may need to hit them once after the first tower shot, then finish them off after the second shot. This will depend on your character.
For ranged minions:
These can be tricky sometimes at the tower. Usually a DPS can let them take one tower shot, then hit them once to kill them. At lower levels you might have to hit them once before the tower hits them, then finish them off (Ashe is like this). Mages have the same problem. Sometimes if they’ve taken a little bit of damage, you’ll have to let the tower shoot them, then finish them off.
If you are in a Duo Lane then you must always hit them once before tower hits them, and once more to finish them off. There are a few characters that are an exception though, like Sion and Mundo.
These procedures do not take into account your minions hitting them or your stupid lane partner screwing it up though. You’ll have to improvise sometimes.
The Laning Phase
If you are in a normal laning situation, 2v2, there are some things to remember.
Use the bush.
Melee heroes need this especially. It’s the only way a melee can stay in the lane with 2 enemy ranged heroes that can harass them. Pop out, get your last hit on that minion, go back in.
DO NOT ATTACK FROM THE BUSH. I see too many people do this. If you are in the bush, and attack, it reveals you, unless a skill-shot. Now you have minions and probably the enemy champion attacking you. Pop out and attack, then go back in.
Just going in the bush will often make your opponents back up. This denies them their minions and possibly XP.
If it looks like you will not be able to kill them (low DPS on your side, crazy healing on theirs) but you are in danger of dieing, it may be better to let them push you back every wave for the safety of your tower. If you do this however, you should make sure they’re not getting hits on your tower when their wave gets to you.
DO NOT check a bush if they’ve been MIA for 5 seconds. Chances are, they are waiting right there for their free food. Keep a safe distance or hit it with a skill shot if you have one.
In a 2v1 situation:
Contrary to popular belief, pushing the minions back into your opponent’s tower and making him tower hug is not too effective.
Any decent player will simply last hit everything, as explained in my earlier section. Any ranged DPS/Mage can safely do this. For a melee, it can be more difficult if you have good harassing ability. They are also still getting the XP and will out level you.
What you should do is let the waves hit each other. At this point the lane will look like this.
Harass until they back up. Remember to use the grass to lose the minion agro. Once you push them back enough, stay on your opponent’s side of the minions, utilizing the grass properly. You should be positioned like this:
Once you get them to back up to their tower you repeat the process during the entire laning phase.
DO NOT sit at their tower and take out their minions as they come in. Let their minions push to the mid, staying in the brush. Once the minion waves have clashed, come out to deny your opponent again. It should look like this:
Get those last hits. Do not auto attack or it will allow more of your minions to reach their tower, where your opponent can get XP off of them. Don’t let the enemy get close either.
One thing that should be mentioned though is that this does not allow for kills very easily. Since they will be backed up to their tower, they probably won’t take much damage and will not be in danger of dieing. Since you are not killing their minions quickly, if you attack them, you’ll have a lot of minions focusing you.
Since this occurs when a champion is jungling most of the time, you should be wary of them. This tactic keeps you mid lane most of the time so you should be able to get out. Expect a gank at around 4-4:30 minute mark if they are running smite or ralley. If not, they may still come, but won’t have the Lizard buff most likely, or will show up late with it.
It should be noted that this is very easy to do in a 2v1 situation. This same thing can occur in a 2v2. The principles are the same though, deny them XP and gold.
In a 1v2 situation:
This should not happen to any melee hero. If your team decides to put you by yourself as a melee against two champions, it could end badly. It’s hard enough to lane as a Range against two intelligent players. Melee makes this even worse. The reasons are explained above.
There are some exceptions. Mord and Jax can hold their own in some situations by sheer durability and damage output. Nasus can sit back and farm with his AoE. I don’t believe any tank should be solo though (I consider Mord a tough melee DPS, in case you’re wondering).
If you are stuck in this predicament, you need to either keep one low enough that they won’t be aggressive, or tower hug a bit to keep you safe.
Since you can out-level them, once you are 5 and they are probably just getting to 3, you could possibly kill one of them if they are low. Be careful though. You have to remember that they still have the damage of two people, and probably a lot of minions.
If you kill one and die, or worse, fail in your attempt and die, it’s really, really bad. You’ve left your tower unguarded and will probably fall if you were laning against a DPS. You’ve just given their team about 650 gold (I believe) and you no longer have a safe place to level up and farm. To top it off, the two champions you were fighting probably leveled up, so that gap you might have created between your level and theirs is smaller.
Pushing a Lane
DISCLAIMER: I DO NOT endorse tower pushing during the laning phase. It’s generally a bad idea. As you will see in higher ELO with organized teams, they don’t do it. However if you REALLY want to push the lane, then here’s a few things to look at.
There is a difference between OMG GOO PUSH PUSH DIEASDJFA;LSDIFJALSKDNMFLAIJ!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !! and intelligent, calculated pushes.
There are sometimes when pushing is impossibly to avoid and beneficial. Some characters are made for this. Some examples I have noticed are: Morgana, Mordekaiser, Heimer, Sivir, Annie, Tristana, Janna. It is not limited to these characters, only these are ones I’ve noticed clear enemy minions very quickly regardless of the situation.
In these cases you can’t forget the basics. Since you will be auto attacking more often, it will be slightly harder to land last hits. This is no excuse though and you should be doing it. If you can deny them XP then do it.
Here are some criteria I consider before deciding to push a tower during the laning phase:
1. Do I have one of the above mentioned characters? (or someone similar, can’t remember them all)
2. Am I in a [2 ranged vs 2 melee] or [2 ranged vs 1 melee and 1 ranged] situation?
3. Do I have a healer?
4. Is there an obvious gap between our skill/level I can exploit?
5. Will their characters run out of mana very quickly if forced into fighting?
6. Can I get that tower down in under 12 minutes?
If you answered yes to more than 3 of these questions, then you could benefit from an early tower push.
There are some things to remember when pushing a tower:
Beware the jungler. If you are at their tower, then you don’t have the safety of your own. You’ll make easy prey for any jungler with the Lizard buff.
When your minions are about to expire, they may come after you. I see this too often. My enemy will want that last hit on my tower. They get it, but then take a tower shot. They are also no where near the safety of their tower. This is easy prey. Yay for morons.
If you feel like tower diving, go ahead. Makes sure your enemy is low though. If you die it’s your own fault, so don’t blame your partner for not helping enough, especially if you gave him no notice that you were going in.
If you DO get their tower down within 12 minutes, have one person stay around there to protect the tower and gain solo EXP, and have the other jungle and gank.
Another thing to remember is that if no one stays in the lane with the down tower, you will have a huge minion wave coming at your tower within about 4 minutes. This occurs because of the spacing between your minion waves. Your minion waves become more spread out and get overextended. This allows your enemy’s minion waves to group up and push a tower by themselves. Someone will need to go clear the lane every 2 minutes or so to keep this from happening.
The main benefit of getting an early tower down is the early gold income for your team, and denying the enemy a safe play to farm. However these possible benefits DO NOT offset the danger of pushing in the first place.
Let your lane partner do their job, within reason.
Support champions DO NOT make you invincible.
I play Janna, Soraka, and Morgana pretty often. There is nothing more aggravating than watch your lane partner go for a kill when the opponent is at 80% health, then die. Soon after their death, they blame you. Their logic usually goes something like: “I don’t get how that guy survived. You should have supported me more. It’s your fault for sucking. I hate youfalsflasidjfklasmdf….”
If you are laning with a support champion, you need to realize a few things. They are baby sitters. They will do as much as they possibly can to keep you alive and going. They ARE NOT DPS. That means that they will not put out the damage you are used to seeing from a DPS/Mage partner. If that enemy is at 80%, he’s not gonna die from you and a support’s auto attack and low damage spells unless they are squishy as hell.
Another thing, and this is for the support champ players. You DON’T NEED all those minion kills. One thing that all support champs have in common is that they are not item dependent (mostly). The support you are giving your team won’t change THAT much if you are farmed well. It is more important that the carry you are supporting gets those minion kills as they will make more use of them. You should be the one popping in and out of the bush to harass while your carry safely farms.
Let them help your lane dominance, but don’t expect miracles from them.
Let them tank. That’s what they’re there for. Tanks should be paired up with a ranged dps or mage so your lane doesn’t get dominated.
He needs to get last hits too, so don’t be a ***** and take every one you see him go for. It’s arguable that DPSers and Mages need gold more. IMO, if a Tank doesn’t have the items to actually tank, then he’s useless and is going to die every fight. Then you’re gonna be all mad that he’s feeding the enemy and nobody’s happy.
Just like in a team fight, if you want to get a kill, let them go in first. Let them take the hits, and let the carry follow up with their damage. DO NOT leave them hanging when they go in. Nothing good can come of this.
If he has no mana, don’t expect them to do much. Last time I checked you could pretty much ignore a tank when all it can do is auto-attack. So don’t get all pissy when you go for a kill that you probably won’t get and die because your tank could only auto-attack.
Set them up. Feed them. Protect them. They make the core of your team. Hope and pray that your carry is good. If you have to choose between saving them and dieing, or leaving them in dust while you get away, you shouldn’t hesitate to sacrifice yourself for them. The ONLY exception I will say that could come up is if you have lots of stacks on a snowball item (Meji, SotO, Levi).
I know that sometimes you come across someone who’s simply terrible. It happens. You might have to get more damage items to bring the pain if you’re not also a DPS/Mage. You should still try to protect them as much as you can, although it could be more beneficial to save yourself instead of them if the situation arises.
Survive and feed them, so they can unleash their scary game changing power in the late game.
These characters include: Master Yi, Ashe, Gangplank, Twitch, Tryndamere, Tristana (it is my opinion that these are the only characters that fit this description, however others may disagree)
By all that’s holy in League of Legends, keep them going. Because of their “auto-attack, you die” nature, it doesn’t take anyone good to carry with those two if the game reaches the 45 minute mark. I honestly cannot tell you why these particular characters go so insane late game as opposed to other carries, other than they are auto-attackers for the most part. Fed or not, these guys just destroy that long into the game. Their power is just leagues above other carries when the game reaches the 45 minute mark.
These are stand-alone figures in a team game. They are a rare breed and devastating if used correctly.
These characters include: Poppy, Urgot, Kayle, Olaf, Tryndamere
To put it simply, these guys’s job is to royally screw over ONE person on the enemy team, usually the carry (hence anti-carry status) With the exception of Urgot, they all have some way to ignore the rest of the enemy team and come at you with everything they have. They are nearly (or in some cases completely) impossible to stop once they’ve decided who they are going after.
The difference between a good and bad anti-carry is simple. If they can get the job done and get out alive then they are doing well. If they die every time or worse don’t get their man (or woman) then you’ve got a feeder to deal with.
These characters excel at single target damage, and are quite scary if fed.
I see that a lot of people wonder why I leave out characters like Kassiden and Akali in the anti-carry section. This is because I separate the anti-carry and assassin class. While they have similar roles but have one big difference. Anti-carries have a way to ignore the rest of the enemy team while assassins do not.
They have the same job of getting in, getting their man, and getting out. However most anti-carries are done after their “immunity” spell is over. What makes an assassin scary is that they can kill their target and keep going for quite a while, still putting out massive damage. This are usually harder-to-play characters and can get shut down easily. They have a problem with being useless or rolling the enemy team. Not many of these are used in high ELO because of this.
1. Focus the carry
2. Do your job.
3. Ignore the tank.
That pretty much sums up team fights. It amazes me that people have not learnt this by now.
If you’re a Tank, tank stuff. Go in first, targeting their carry. Your team will follow if you are doing your job. Basically what makes a good tank is that they can't be ignored entirely. You should be able to take hits and do reasonable damage. Most also have CC (stuns/slows) to "force" a fight to happen. This way their carry that you targeted has to turn and fight you since he can't get away.
If you are Support, protect your carry and screw over theirs. Stay in the back since you are most likely made of paper.
If you’re a DPS, target their DPS, not their tank. If you are a squishy DPS, which most are, DO NOT go in first. Follow the tank in.
Assassins and Anti-Carries need to get to high priority targets and take them out. Anti-Carries can use their immunity to get in quick. Assassins should wait till all the CC has been thrown away, THEN, go in and do their job.
I’d like to address one thing I’ve seen happen a lot, and I’m at fault for this too a lot. The enemy tank will initiate and everyone blows all their spells on the guy that’s in the middle of all of you. This is instinct and people will always do it. When this happens, there are two outcomes:
1. Their tank hasn’t been doing well or your DPS is fed some. Their tank dies instantly to the 5 champion focus fire. That’s fine. If that happens, you should all RUN. Everyone on your team has all their spells on cool down and the enemy team is coming to avenge their fallen brother. You’ve gotten a free kill, so no reason to chance anything. Back out and wait about 10 sec before going back in.
This will allow any healers you have to regen any damage you’ve taken and all your spells will be back up. People really need to consider a Mage’s cool downs. For example, Anivia's initiation spell has a CD of 8 sec at level 5 (which she won't have until lvl 13-15), without Cool Down Reduction. I know others are similar. If you go in right after you kill their tank, your Mages will most likely be useless and you’re fighting 4 enemy champions with half of your champions restricted to auto-attacks for several seconds. Chances are their initial burst will kill one of your carries. Now they are down a tank, and you are down a carry. Their tank has done their job, and one of your carries can’t do theirs because they are dead. This won’t end well.
2. You blow all your spells on their tank and he DOESN’T die. Well this is just unfortunate. Either someone on your team isn’t doing their job or their tank is fed a bit. Now the enemy team is going to kill you. Have fun with that. You should probably fall back to let all your cool downs reset so you can actually fight back.
If their carry gets too aggressive though you can always take the fight to them. Just hope your tank sees this and goes after him. This is a scary situation because it could go either way. Have fun.
1. If the entire enemy team is MIA (missing in action) don’t go off alone, or even in pairs. As soon as you find them, you’ll die.
2. If you see one enemy champion run into a bush away from you, this is called “bait”. If you take it, you die. Chances are that the other 4 champions are waiting in the bush to kill you. Don’t fall for this.
These little 90 gold items will save your life over and over again. Place them in high traffic areas: the river, gank bushes, Golem, Lizard, Dragon, Baron. These will allow you to get ganks often, and save you from them.
Most of the time nobody remembers to get them. What I suggest is that at the select champion screen you ask people to rotate buying wards. I’ve started doing this and most people agree to it. It’s only 90 gold to see an area for 10% of the game in an average 45min game.
Don’t be shy about spending 150 on the stealth ones. All stealth heroes have one thing in common: they are squishy as hell. Lay them down in the same spots, and in the middle of lanes. When you see them don’t go crazy and attack them yet. Ping them and go around them. Hopefully your partner will see what you’re doing and help you pincer them to death.
These are amazing. They are only 300 gold for a major boost in stats. I myself forget about them a lot. I’m currently trying to remember to utilize these every game, although it slips my mind a lot still. Use them, I command you.
There are team compositions that you have to be aware of. Here are some of the few that you’ll see.
These teams comprise themselves of characters that are simply hard to stop. They usually have a healer or two and long range support spells. They are hard to stop if they want your tower. They usually win long stand offs and are good at kiting.
Here’s an example of one: Ezreal, Janna, Taric, Sivir, Heimer
This team sports one long range DPS (Ez), one support/anti-gank/gank/anti-AoE/shield/buff tool (Janna), a healer/tank with good CC (Taric), the push master (Sivir), and a mobile base of operations (Heimer).
This team’s goal is to create an unstoppable force that can and WILL take that tower down if you sit there and wait for the fight to happen. They may not even be beating you in kills. However, since towers are being downed constantly on your side, your team is running out of room to safely farm and have fights.
To fight this team: Do not sit around idle. Force the fight quickly. The longer you wait to start the fight, the more damage your tower takes. Once the tower is down, they’ll move on to the next one.
These teams are very similar to push teams. The main difference is that they are more concerned with killing YOU, not your tower. Where as a push team gets hits on your tower constantly and staying safe themselves, a poking team goes straight for you.
Here’s an example of a poke team: Gragas, Ezreal, Nidalee, Morgana, Gangplank
This team supports long range, high damage, spam-able spells. Gragas has his barrel, Ez his Mystic Shot, Nidalee her Javelin, Morgana her Dark Binding, and Gangplank’s Parley. These can all be used to chip away at your health before the fight starts.
During a tower stand-off they can easily get one or two of your teammates down dangerously low so they have to recall. Now you are fighting against the odds. Good luck with that.
To fight this team: Do not sit around idle. Force the fight quickly. The longer you wait to start the fight, the more damage your teammates take. Once they have significant health/party member advantage, they’ll force the fight and you’ll be at a disadvantage.
These teams are very annoying and very simple. They consist of several healers and/or support characters and still support enough dps to take you down one at a time. They like to play wars of attrition since they can heal up and go back in quickly, where you cannot.
Here’s an example of a heal team: Soraka, Taric, Kayle, Janna, Ashe
This team has just enough dps to take out one of you and keep their guys alive. This is hard to beat if your team is not coordinated. These teams also have it very easy early game, as they have healers everywhere for lane dominance.
To fight this team: FOCUS FIRE. You must burn down 1 person with everything you have as quickly as you can so the healers cannot protect them. If you fail to do so, and they get away, you’re going to have a hard time defeating them. Do not sit around idle either. The longer an engagement takes to start the worse it gets for you.
Alpha Dog Team
Cheesy name I know, but this is what I call it. These teams are rare but you should be aware if you come across one. These teams are centered around one person on the team. Usually there is a designated team carry for any team, but in this case it goes to the extreme.
Here’s an example of an Alpha Dog Team: Morgana, Janna, Zilean, Kayle, + the Alpha Dog.
The Alpha Dog is usually one of the “hyper carries”: Ashe, Master Yi, Twitch, Gangplank.
Their whole goal is to last into late game where these guys will single handedly destroy your entire team by simply right clicking on you. All of their abilities are centered around protecting/buffing the Alpha Dog. We have all seen that fed Alpha Dog ace your entire team and get a penta-kill. These teams are designed to make that happen EVERY fight.
To fight this team: Kill the Alpha Dog early, and often. This will keep him in check and not let them get too strong. A quick finish would be good too, as these late game monsters will not be able to show their true power then. Also if you can manage to pick off a straggler, it would hinder their ability to keep their Alpha Dog going.
Area of Effect (AoE) Madness
These teams LOVE team fights. They are designed around their ulti’s usually and have multiple AoE abilities that when unleashed together in sequence will destroy your entire team.
Here’s an example of an AoE Madness team: Amumu, Morgana, Galio, Gangplank, Vladimir.
If executed correctly, this set of ultimates will decimate their enemies. Multiple stuns/slows/taunt coupled with so much AoE damage will destroy any sort of coordination that your team had.
To fight these teams: Try to push several lanes at once. This will force them to split their forces and greatly diminish their effectiveness. Also you should try to pick off one before the fight even starts. Juke around the bushes and run around the map until one of them gets too far out of position and kill them.
TL;DR : Last Hit Minions, Deny EXP, Focus Carry, Ignore Tank, Don't Roam by Yourself, Don't Fall for Bait
That’s it for my guide for now. If you would like to add something please feel free. All I ask is that you explain your reasoning. I hope this helps someone.
Good guide, although posted in the wrong forum.
Apart from the fact that you didn't bold anything like you said you would, my only criticism is about when you talk about last hitting. You imply that this means not autoattacking minions except to get the last hit on them, but I couldn't find where you explicitly stated that, and I think the guide would be clearer if you did, especially since this is such an important point that ridiculous numbers of level 30s just don't know.
Oh, the basics... and yet...
I honestly can't believe how many times I've had to say "Can we please fight as a group now?" at the 30 minute mark... for the 5th time.
To be fair though, I hadn't really thought much about some of the laning phase tactics outlined here. I was one of those "push 'em to the tower so they have trouble last hitting" types. Probably because I haven't it a high enough ELO yet, where people effectively last hit at the tower.
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