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Map Control and Awareness

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Mr Threepwood

Senior Member


Here's something I'm a bit curious about. Baron, and dragon, how important is it that I can see these guys? If i place a ward between the baron or dragon and the nearby gank bush I can tell if someone goes in the bush, two of the nearby entrance exits to the river, and if someone goes in the barron/dragon. I can't see if someone ports into dragon or barron though...

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Aemon Darkstar

Senior Member


Excellent guide. +1. Hell, +100 if I could.

Its shocking how much people underestimate map awareness. Last game, I was the only one on my team warding, and those wards alone got us over 15 kills and 3 advantageous teamfights.
More people should read and understand this guide.

EDIT: Minor correction. Evelynn's Malice and Spite does not light up near enemy champions, it is always lighted up unless its on CD. Hate Spike does light up, but its range is so short that you would be too near the brush in any case. However Hate Spike icon is useful to check for a nearby invis enemy champ.

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Senior Member


Thank you everyone for helping me with champions I don't play. Honestly, without the community helping me make this the best guide it could be I would probably have given up way before I got this far. Thank you everyone for the positive reviews and Support.

BTW: I just received notification that Elementz will be posting this Guide on his site. Be sure to check it out at Reign of Elementz (http://www.reignofelementz.com)

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Junior Member


You should also add that towers provide map control. For example, if the middle and bottom towers are destroyed, then the enemy team cannot attempt dragon without being very far from their towers. Also, by pushing down the top and middle towers, you can take map control over baron. This should be kept in mind while having the option to destroy two towers of equal health.

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I've been trying to place more wards around the map like your guide states, however I find I'm underleveled due to moving aroudn the map to place wards. If I'm laning bottom should I only be concerned with warding bottom locations?
Also who are good champs other then junglers to use wrigglers, I love it on corki and anyone i get teleport with. But i just don't find it effective on support heros like Janna, but I'm also worried about the costs of all these wards i'm buying vs the cheap wrigglers.

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Junior Member


Table of Contents:
I) Introduction
II) Importance of Map Control and Map Awareness
III) Tips & Tricks
IV) Ward Locations
V) Clairvoyance
VI) Placing Wards
VII) Dragon and Baron Control
VIII) Buying Wards
IX) Vision Wards vs Oracle's Elixir
X) Brush Checkers
XI) Acknowledgements

| Introduction |
Hello, My name is OddSquad and I am a wardaholic. When I started the game my friends where all lvl 25+ and I had to learn how to play at high lvls before getting there. I learned support and ranged characters because I could sit outside of the enemies range and kill them and stay alive. Now as I played more, I started watching High Tier games, and I became obsessed with ward control. From there I found that knowing where the enemy was at all times really changes the outcome of the game from the first minute. Anytime I see something about wards or ward control I try to learn it and compare it to what I have already seen. Currently I'm trying to take what I have learned and relay it to all of you who overlook the single most important mechanic in the game. This guide will focus on using wards and clairvoyance to give you the best possible advantage in game.

| Importance of Map Control and Map Awareness |
Map Control = OP
Map Awareness = OP

Map Control + Map Awareness = Extremely OP

If you don't believe me take a look at the Quadrakill videos. At 10 minutes, you could tell who was going to win just by looking at who had the wards and who didn't.

If you start to say "That's high ELO that doesn't affect me" then you are a complete idiot. It does affect you, because wards are a very simple skill that any champion can take advantage of. Map Control and Map Awareness are also one of the few things that are completely up to the summoner's skill. And yes it does make you a better player if you use wards.

"You get wards because they grant you map control, which gives you control over the opponent's movement, which in turn gives you control over the game." by NadeDawg

(Note: Someone PM'd me this which I am sorry for quoting without permission but I think sums up everything I wanted to say about how important map control and awareness are.

| Tips & Tricks |
-If the enemy has a jungler. Use Clairvoyance to find him and follow him in the jungle. This requires you to learn the jungling routes.
In a game the other day, I shut down Warwick because I knew where he started, followed him with Clairvoyance and my team would gank him at buffs and steal from him. By 20 minutes two of their players raged pretty hard at WW on all chat and left the game because he couldn't "protect his jungle" from 3 man ganks.

-Placing a ward when you are about either lvl 3 or 4 will help you avoid being ganked. And it will allow you to set up counter ganks. Generally if you are side line at level 3 or 4 mid lane will be 6.

-If you are mid and can only afford 1 ward. Place it on one side and hug that side. This will limit the direction you can be ganked from.

-Warding Dragon and Baron is a must. Do it. You never know when it will pay off.

-Always have room for a ward in your inventory. Unless you are the tank or carry.

-Wards can be placed to take blows for the player: Dropping a ward to prevent Morgana's Dark Binding or Stop Rammus' Roll.

-Grab Oracle's Elixir or Vision wards and use them to kill off the other teams wards.

-How to check if bushes are warded in your lane without Oracle's. Get minion aggro then walk into the bush. if its warded then they will continue to follow you. If it's not than aggro will drop. I try to do this on every minion wave with at least one of the bushes.

-Tele gank: One member will place a ward in a bush. The remaining members will teleport to the ward and from there the team will gank the opponents. A modified verison of this can be done at lvl1 for first blood with Teleport, Ghost, Boots of Speed and a minimal base movement speed of 318. Video of lvl1 Tele Gank (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rtbOGYPTEgM)

| Ward Locations |
From Blues perspective

Most import to least important
1) Baron
2) Dragon
3) Top/Bottom River Bush, Mid bushes
4) Buffs with priority on enemy buffs

G) Gank Brushes: You are most likely to get ganked from one of the brushes marked G. All lanes have two of these gank spots so buy some wards and place them in these spots. So you can safely push.

i) Invisibles: If they have a stealth champion on their team drop a Vision Ward at these locations.
L) Luxury Spots: honestly probably the worst place to use a ward. Use a Brush Checker to see what is in the brush.
O) Offensive: Use only when pushing their Inhibitor turrets
D) Defensive: Know where they are attacking from before they get to you
B) Baron: If your team is about to Baron, you should probably ward therse spots.

Map of Where to Place Wards (http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l292/twelvetables/SummonersRiftWardsV2.jpg)

Question: At mid lane what is better placing a ward at the small bush or at the bush closest to you?

For me after taking a look at these spots. I believe the small bush is more important. I say this because it also reveals 2 pathways and covers the entry to the bush closest to mid lane. If you know some one moves into that bush you can set up a gank, drop a ward in it or use a brush checker move to see if someone is in it.

| Clairvoyance |
From Blues perspective

Most import to least important
1) Finding their Jungler the 3 spots in their jungle give you the best chance of finding thier junglers location. Chances are you can find him in first 2 minutes of the game.

2) Baron and Dragon

3) Gank Spots these should already be warded so you don't have to worry to much about these

4) Side Bushes Great for opening a gank by revealing the enemies in bush at the start of the fight. Also good for preventing loss of sight as an enemy flees.

O) Offensive spots for watching the backside of turrets. This allows you to use skill shots from odd places with a high chance to hit.

D) Defensive spots for watching your back as you take out turrets.

Map of Where to Use Clairvoyance (http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l292/twelvetables/SummonersRiftCV.jpg)
Area of CV is slightly off.

Clairvoyance Tips:

-Try to place clairvoyance so that the enemy cannot see it's location. They can still hear the sound, but they won't be able to see where it is.
oEasiest place to do this is outside the map on the Side lane bushes
oAnother trick is to learn the range of Clairvoyance and so your targets are just inside the range, so it is harder to spot unless the enemy scrolls the map.
oNote: It is harder to notice CV if you are playing on the Autumn version of Summoners Rift.

| Placing Wards |

----WIP---- This section is going to take a look at minimizing ward usage based on pushing and defending. I am working on Screen Shots and New Maps focusing on each lane. There will be four sections:
Stand Still (laning phase no pushing or defending)
Mid Lane
Pushing Top / Defending Bot
Pushing Bot / Defending Top

The reason why it is pushing top and defending bot is I will be doing things from the Blue teams point of view. Because of how the map is set up Pushing Top is the Same as Defending Bot.

| Dragon and Baron Control |

Gives 190 gold to all players upon death. Why is this so important if it only gives 8 minions worth of gold? It's because it respawns in 6 minutes. That means getting Dragon at everytime it respawns will skyrocket your teams gold.

As a support player anytime we take Dragon I use that as an oppertunity to get a "free" Vision ward and all those non support players should use it too get a Sight Ward or two. I mean Whats Wrong with spending 75 out of 190 gold on something that wins games and saves lives?

Warding Dragon:

Warding Dragon (http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l292/twelvetables/DragonMultipleWardSpots.png)

Spot 1: This spot is on the backside of dragon. Good for scaring people out of dragon and at the right angle a tree will actually cover this ward up.
Spot 2: River/Entrance I place this a bit further out because some teams will pull dragon into the river. The ideal location for this ward is that you can see about half of the dragon with your Ward.

Baron Nashor:

Upon Death Gives your team the Exalted with Baron Nashor Buff. This 8 minute BUff gives your team:
40 Ability Power
40 Damage
3% of your Max Health in Health Regeneration
1% of your Max Mana in Mana Regeneration
Each player on the team is also granted the following:
900 Experience Points
300 Gold

Due to the overwealming advatage this buff gives, a losing team can often turn the tides of a match with a single Baron kill/steal.

Warding Baron:
The most important thing here to notice is that Baron gives such a large advantage in the game that letting the other team take it uncontested is a crime. Genereally the teams are about lvl 13 when they go for Baron. Some characters (Shaco) can Solo Baron at the 15 Minute mark. Which is why it is so important to get a ward at baron at that 15 minute mark. If you can afford a Vision Ward this is a place to use it. If you can't afford Vision Wards, get a Sight Ward. Just be sure it is always lit up.

Great Question: How important is it to see the enemy at Baron/Dragon?
Answer: Extremely. Think about it this way you saw the enemy team go towards Baron and disappear. You walk over there to check baron. They just finished it and you are about to give them a free kill. Or let's say that you tell your team they are at Baron. Your team goes and checks baron only to see that no one is there. The other team has Baron warded and was at blue buff. They can see you at Baron. They gank your team in the river. They take Baron and they win. False Alarms kill teams. Just pay the 3 minions worth of gold to get a ward at Baron and Dragon so you can be sure they are getting Baron/Dragon. And if they are you can steal it.

Warding Baron Screenshot (http://i99.photobucket.com/albums/l292/twelvetables/BaronMultipleWardspots.png)

There are 3 Spots to Ward Baron:
Spot 1: In the river/entrance to Baron: This is the most used spot for baron because it gives sight of the river as well as Baron. (This Should be Closer to between the posts than I did in the screenshot)
Spot 2: This Ward is around the corner from the river and Is able to "hide" from vision wards placed farther into the river. It gives a full view of baron and is less likely to be seen.
Spot 3: Dropping a ward from the back side allows you to scare people out of baron as well as provide the benifits of

Double Warding:
2 wards in one spot??? Well thats dumb. Or is it? Take another look at the the screen Shot of Baron Warded. Look at the Position of wards 1 and 3. If an enemy drops a vision ward at the entrance to baron they can see ward 1 but not ward 3. So they go and kill ward 1 but you can still see if they go for baron with ward 3. The Idea of Double Warding is a decoy(river) ward another ward that watched Baron. This is sometimes used at dragon but I would only use it at Baron. Note: My screen shot of Dragon Warded is a good example of Double Warding.

| Buying Wards |
What is a ward:

Sight Ward:
Cost 75g
Range: 1000
Duration: 180 sec (3 min)
HP: 3 hits

Note: Wriggles Lantern active is a Sight Ward

Vision Ward:
Cost: 125g
Range: 1000
Duration: 180 sec (3 min)
HP: 3 hits

Do You Buy Enough Wards? Take this short quiz to find out!

Do you use wards?
1: Yes
2: No


If Yes: On average how many do you use a game?
A: 0-5
B: 6-9
C: 10+

If A: BUY MORE WARDS. 1 every 5 minutes or so

If B: This is fine if you are the carry or tank.

If C: Good you are using wards. Try not to use more than 15 ever unless you are the jungler or support. (If you are support, start using clairvoyance)

Order of who should buy wards:

1) Jungler: They move around so much that they have the freedom to place wards. During laning phase there is no excuse for the jungle to not use wards. Also Wriggles Lantern is a great jungle item and comes with a free ward. It is a great item for junglers to use.

2) Support: Wards are a huge support item in the game so of course the support player will need to stock up on wards.

3) Off-Tank: As a back up to the tank the Off-tank has more room to buy and place wards.

4) Tank: needs to get build to protect the team.

5) Carry: Needs to get built to get DPS going.

Please note that as teams start to team up, a champions role will decide who is responsible for wards. (the main champion here would be the support)

Now that you know you need to buy some wards how do you create good habits of purchasing and using wards.

To start off: a good plan to buy more wards is start off by buying a sight ward everytime you recall. After a while this will put you in the habit of adding the cost of a ward to whatever item you are looking to buy.

If you are the Carry or the tank than you are not exempt from buying wards. In the laning phase you will still have to purchase and watch out for those ganks. At mid to late game you will stop using wards due to the fact that you are finishing up your build. Until then get wards and help your team control the map.

Here are a few quick questions to ask yourself when buying wards?

For Laning Phase:
Does the jungler have a ward/can he place one by you? If no then buy a ward.
Does anyone in your lane have a ward? If not buy one or two.
Does anyone have a ward at all? If not buy a few and spread the love.
Does the enemy team have a jungler or an invisi? If yes, get a ward (Vision ward if invisi) and place it at 3 (or i) as soon as possible.
Does the enemy have a jungler? If yes, grab a ward and ward the other teams buffs.

For Mid/Late Game:
Is Dragon/Baron Warded? If not buy a ward and place it there ASAP.
Are the Gank bushes warded? If not buy some wards and place them when you go to push a lane.
Are the buffs warded? If not, ward them when you get a chance.
Does anyone have a ward at all? If not buy a few and spread the love.

| Vision Wards vs Oracle's Elixir |
Vision Wards:
Primarily, used early game to protect yourself from being ganked by invisible champions. Later game they are used to protect Baron and Dragon by allowing you to see the the enemies wards.

Oracle's Elixir:
Used as a mobile Vision Ward. An early game Oracle's on a support character can lead to denying the other team any sort of map control. Often the preferred over Vision Wards in mid to late game due to it's mobility and overall cost effectiveness.

| Brush Checkers |
This is a list of Champions that have moves that can check to see if a champion is in the bush or not. It is split into three catagories: Sight, On Hit and Face. Sight is when you can see into the bush or area. On Hit is when you can hear or see the contact in the bush. Face is when there is some danger in checking the bush.

Anivia- Crystalize
Ashe- Hawkshot
Caitlyn- Yordle Snap Trap
Corki- Phosphorus Bomb
Hiemerdinger- H-28G Evolution Turret: Can be used as Ward; CH-1 Concussion Grenade: gives sight at location
Kog'Maw- Living Artillery Gives sight upon hit
Lux- Lucent Singularity
Malzahar- Call of the Void: use perpendicular to bush
Maokai- Sappling Toss
Nasus- Spirit Fire
Nidalee- Bushwhack: gives sight when placed and again when activated; will reveal Wards and other cloaked skills
Olaf- Undertow
Shaco- Jack in the Box: Can be used as a ward.
Teemo- Noxious Trap (Shrooms): Can be used as a ward. You know them and hate them (will explode when placed on wards and it will not reveal them)
Trundle- Pillar of Filth: Can be used to push enemies out of bush, best used on small bushes, also gives sight
Urgot- Noxian Corrosive Charge gives visions and reveals allows you to lock onto stealthed units
Viegar- Dark Matter (brief sight before hit)

On Hit:
Ashe- Volley: Arrow will disappear if enemy is hit
Blitzcrank- Rocket Grab: Enemy comes and gives you a hug
Cassiopia- Noxious Blast***: gives buff on hit
Corki- Missile Barrage: hard to hit but will explode if it hits something.
Dr. Mundo- Cleaver: sound
Ezreal- Mystic Shot***: dissapears on hit; Essence Flux***: sound; Trueshot Barrage***: sound
Kennen- Thundering Shuriken; Electrical Surge: if they have a charge on them
LaBlanc- Ethereal Chains: Latches on contact
Morgana- Dark Binding: Send skill shot so it will end past the bush.
Nidalee- Javelin Toss: sound
Olaf- Undertow: sound
Sivir- Boomerang Blade
Swain- Nevermore: sound
Trundle- Pillar of Filth: Can be used to push enemies out of bush, best used on small bushes
Urgot- Acid Hunter: sound
Vladimir- Tides of Blood: will hit invisible champions, wards and people in brushes; watch for the animation going into the bush

Akali- Twilight Shroud*
Annie- Tibbers: use Tibbers to face check the bush (do not summon Tibbers just to do this, only use him to face check if he is already out)
Evelynn- Shadow Walk*; Hate Spike**
Hiemerdinger- H-28G Evolution Turret: when placing it
Katarina- Death Lotus**
Morgana- Soul Shackles**
Shaco- Jack in the Box: when placing it; Deceive*
Soraka- Starcall** also lights up around minions
Teemo- Noxious Trap (Shrooms): when placing it
Twicht- Ambush*
Vladimir- Sanguine Pool: Not reccomended to use

Other Abilities to note:
Fiddlesticks- Dread: This will show up on you if Fiddlesticks is around

*Allows you to check bushes if they do not have Vision Wards or Oracle's Elixir
**Lights up around enemy champions not recommended to use.
***Abilities give a Buff on hit

| Acknowledgement |
Feligues, dddavidp, fluke1993, Scooterpie, Ediwir, Saraku, Prometheius, TrustiestKarma on Brush Checkers
Arcanas213, and Dock Lee on Clairvoyance
Hado on Vision Wards vs Oracle's Elixir
Rakoth's Motto: Map Awareness = OP
thuu on placing wards
Mr Threepwood for the excellent question.
NadeDawg for the greatest quote ever.
I also want to give a shout-out to Leaguecraft (http://www.leaguecraft.com) Who helped me start this and has taught me more about this game than anyone.

Remember: Map Control + Map Awareness is insanely OP.

Sticky Worthy imo.

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Senior Member



I would include that but this guide is about creating Map Control and using Map Awareness. Players are already used to the control their turrets give and I have no belief that losing a few turrets can stop you from warding baron/dragon and/or stealing baron / dragon.


Awh yes I remember going through that stage, when I was learning how to do this. TBH a support champion needs at least one Gold per 5 item in order to keep up with the demand. I usually get 2 as a support. I rush a Philosopher's Stone and either Heart of Gold or Kage's Lucky Pick. I also use the Mastery Greed. So far that works for me.

As for warding lanes. Each lane should be responsible for their gank bushes (marked 3 in the picture).

Top lane (solo) is responsible for only their gank bush.

Bottom is responsible for Dragon as well. (2 people take care of two spots). On you way back to the lane is the best time to drop off wards when you are starting out. If you have tele use it between minion waves to get back quick and make a fast run to Dragon to drop it off if you do it right you will only mission 3 or 4 minions.

Junglers are responsible for enemy buffs, first ward on Baron, helping and helping mid with wards.

If there is no jungler than top lane is Responsible for baron and the buff on that side. Mid is in charge of their two bushes. And bot lane has Dragon and the enemy buff on that side.


I appreciate the quote but could you remove it or change it to a spoiler to conserve space for people scrolling through the forums. Plus in a few days that quote will be outdated with the updates I have planned.

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Senior Member



-Katarina and Jax can place wards then use abilities to jump to wards, this allows them to jump over walls.

Actually seen this once on a Katarina and thought it was insane.
Upvoted by the way.

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Don't forget irelia's passive, either.

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Senior Member


Just updated with the Stand Still part of ward placing.

@hydrogencar using wards or clairvoyance Akali and XinZhao can also escape over walls.

Updated Placing wards on pushing/defending top/bottom. Mid is still under works (although the link for the photo is up)