So you want to be a competitive player?
by Alan LaFleur July 17, 2012 @ 08:07pm
"I'm pretty good, how do I find a team!"
You ask any professional player how to get into competitive League of Legends and they will probably tell you the following:
"Play solo queue, get good, get discovered, then teams will ask you."
That was an quote from CLG Black, a few players that came from out of nowhere and were noticed by Counter Logic Gaming. Now they are considered a force to be reckoned with in the competitive scene.
You might be thinking that there has to be more to it than that? What is the definition of good? How do I get discovered?
I know in most aspects of life that a first impression is the most important part of getting noticed by someone.
So, first off, if you are playing in ranked game and want to get noticed by a team do the following: Don't troll, play your hardest, and show the other players that you belong there.
Second, don't be afraid to talk to people. Players that are already in the competitive scene are people just like you and will talk to you if you reach out.
The third thing is that it will take time to become good at this game. All of the players in this competitive scene play A LOT. You will have to be able and have the desire to dedicate a lot of time to not only playing but also studying the game.
"I consider myself a leader, maybe I should create my own team?"
Honestly, if you want to start your own team, there is nothing stopping you. Of course, not everyone can start a team and be successful with it. A team needs one strong leader that can do the following: keep the focus in practice sessions, schedule scrimmages, and sign the team up for tournaments. Yes, eventually you could grab a manager to do a lot of that but the leader of the team will be playing that role starting out.
Dirtnap Gaming, a team from southern California that has made a splash into the professional scene, started with five friends playing together and then realizing that they made a pretty good team. They started to play online cups like Go4LoL (which they won a couple) and ranked 5's. Recently, they were one of the eight invited teams for the Gigabyte eSports LAN.
Here are a few reasons you should create a team:
- Most teams in the scene aren't as well off as you would like to believe.
- Hard work and consistent practice can get you in the top 10 eventually
- You control your destiny and can market your team as much as you want
Will it be a lot of work? Yes, but you are working at something you are passionate about; most people would consider that 'Living the Dream'.
"I want to start a team, what skills should I look for in teammates?"
Obviously you need to look for players that can operate as though the five players are one person, which will take time. There will be resistance at the beginning because that is that is the general rule of group development. However, if someone continues to bring down the team and doesn't seem to be getting better it may be time to look for another option.
Some tips from the manager of CLG Black, Tim 'Peolo Bear' Yeung:
- When you want to get to a pro level of play, get to 2k elo first, that will test your skills
- Find people in Solo Queue that are good or friends that you know are good
- When looking for an AD carry, make sure they can last hit
- With Supports you have to make sure they work well with your AD carry, so they bond and connect
- The Top Lane Player needs to know how to freeze the lane, farm, and not die
- The Jungler needs to be someone that can gank, keep up in levels, and make plays happen
- Your Mid Lane needs to be someone that can farm and knows when to gank other lanes
Once you find your team it is time to take the advice of Dirtnap Gaming's coach, Lance 'CronoRegen' Mar. He tells me that the secret to success is no secret at all, "If a team wants to get more serious they should obviously practice together more. Doing ranked 5s may seem like a waste of time, but it will build team synergy."
Follow Tim and Lance's advice and you'll be ready for the next section in no time.
"My team and I are practicing and we are good, how do I show the world how awesome we are?"
Nowadays, there are many tournaments for amateur teams to play. The weekly one that comes to mind is the Electronic Sports League's Go4LoL tournaments across North America and Europe. These tournaments may have professional teams in them but they still will get your team used to tournament play. Remember, you can only achieve the highest level if you play with the highest level of competition.
Go4LoL isn't the only tournament for amateurs, you just need to know where to look. The certain places you can look for these tournaments are:
- League of Legends Event Calendar - A calendar that has amateur/open events listed
- LoL Tournamentz Subreddit - A subreddit that tracks open tournaments
There is one other tournament that you can prove if your team has what it takes to be taken seriously in the League of Legends competitive scene. That tournament is the MOBAFire Community Cup that is taking place this weekend. Sign up and see how your team stacks up with the rest of the amateur League of Legends community.
One thing to do during the whole process of getting into competitive LoL is to follow the advice of the Dirtnap Gaming coach, Lance 'Cronoregen' Mar:
"I would say if you truly want your team to succeed, losses should not be about who did what that lost the game, but what could your team do as a whole to win the game. Losses come with valuable lessons to be learned to help better your team. No one wins everything."
Best of luck to everyone that embarks on this journey. Next week in my League Business article, I will talk about how to go about marketing the team you created.