I have been playing LOL for about 1 year now. Been playing Dota2 for about 6 months. I wrote this guide to share my thoughts with the community about these 2 wonderful games, to tell what I've learned and what I wanted do read when i was "noober", or "newbier".
This guide contains things that I've not found in any other guides (at least, its what i wanted it to contain ^^'). I still am really impressed that noone talks about the pure STRATEGY in LOL and Dota (or I've not found noone yet) (update: perhaps i should have searched "metagame" before... Thx Caio for this tip ;) ), so I decided to create a guide myself.
I'm surely not a pro player, but i have been inspecting through my journey in the MOBA scene what wins games and what loses games. So ask you guys COMMENTS, this guide is new, it has to be upgraded. My intention here is to teach what I can, but to learn too. I really want to know what u guys think ;)
PS: This guide contains some self-help motivational texts, but if u don't like this kind of things, just skip those parts.
Update: Caio suggested me to teach better some specific parts of the everyday gaming: farming, laning, pushing, ganking, all that stuff, so i created a How To part.
The beginning of your journey: the basics
-Play dota 1
If you just started to play LOL, I've got a personal tip for you, play dota 1 right away.
Buy Warcraft 3, wich is a wonderful game BTW, get the latest dota map and suffer. I personally think you are going to suffer, its a hell of a confusing map and not noob friendly in any way, but you may/will suffer for a good reason. I've come to notice through my time playing MOBAs that the more I played LOL, I didn't use to get better in dota, but the more I played dota, I greatly improved at LOL. I don't know if this happened because LOL is a simplified version of Dota, but I'm just telling you the facts.
But why play dota first? Because it's more difficult. You will get used to the difficulty and see that LOL isn't a difficult game at all, even if it comes to seem to be. I think a player who's used to DOTA will be, in general, more open minded to LOL, and I expect this to help him/her winning in this area.
- Play and don't quit
If you are or is constantly called a noob, don't stop. Get used to this world, the heroes the items, latter you will start to link things and maybe become a good player, if you aren't.
-General tips about your behavior at games
1: One of the most important items you can have in this game, or any other team based game is HUMBLENESS. Hear people, and don't tell'em off or humiliate them. You are sabotaging your team, and the game.
2: Don't quit. Noone likes quitters, use the wonderfull surrender command instead.
3:There is a function in LOL and Dota2 that most people may not know but changes games, the MUTE button. Someone ruining your game? Mute him/her. It may save your mood, and sometimes MOBAs are just about your mood.
-Check guides, and videos.
It's always good to keep learning about the game. Dota and LOL are somewhat complicated games. The more you know about them, the closer you are to winning. I specially recommend new players to play with pre-made builds. Yes, latter on I will say to don't do it too much, but for the newcomer to get a taste of how the items work, and
if you are an idiot. This community is getting worse and worse because there are a lot stuck up people coming here. So if you are not open minded and at least a bit calm, stop playing LOL and Dota.
Later stages, in lol, somewhat between lvs 14-30
-Get to know dota
Play it just to know what it is and how it works. It will force you to rethink a lot of concepts you have, with i think will boost your win count. ( if you just play dota, don't think LOL will help you much... but it's fun to play nonetheless)
-Check more guides and more videos
-Play play play
and play more, till lv 30, where things start to get interesting.
-Find your play-stile
Know yourself and your enemy and in 100 battles you will be in no danger. Sun Tzu said it, and he's 100% right. Know all about LOL or Dota, if you don't know yourself and how you work, you are wasting your time.
--Personal tip: play with you hero rooster
Find your "deck" of heroes. I recommend you learn to play with at least 1 of all the archetypes
In LOL: full-Carry ad, full-Carry ap, suport, jungler, (tank jungler), (ranged) mid, solotop
Note: LOL is so simplyfied that, in my opinion, everyone is a pusher there. See, in dota, some heroes can't "push" well, or can't do it at all, and some are somewhat made to do it. In LOL, everyone can push, just some can do it faster.
In DOTA: Carry, Suport, Pusher, Ganker, Initiator
-Play with the guide's builds
I learned a lot about items by playing with the builds i found in guides. I recommend players at this level doing it to increase their knowledge about the items in the game (LOL and DOTA) to in the future, they can be able to make better and more diversified builds.
-(for LOL only) Buying heroes
I now regret 50% of my purchases or more. I realized that I should have waited more before buying a lot of heroes. I recommend that you buy only the heroes you play at least good, if you don't want to troll games.
-(for LOL only) Don't touch your runes till LV 20
Don't waste gold buying < tier 3 runes, Its a recall waste of money and time.
-(Update) Start to watch high level play, or Season 1 and 2 finals
It may sensibly improve your game.
The begging of the rest of your life (in lol, lv30 and on)
-Read more guides, and watch more videos.
Try to keep always learning about the game. Guides are experience from other players, and you are sure to benefit from them. Now, you know your play-stile, the items, the heroes, guides will give you new ideas how things work, use them to increase your strategy repertory.
-Don't be stuck up
or stop playing, we don't want you here. (i say this because you may be much better now than you were at, lets say, lv 10, and you might start to think you are the king of the world. Not so easy son ; ) )
-Recheck the basics
Maybe you are lv 30 but u don't know some basic concepts that may help you. For ex, 10% of the lv 30 players know about laning and when to gank. This is ridiculous, it's something everyone should know by Lv 1. (update: seriously, over the past week i came by 4 guys lv30 who didn't know what Maldredz were...)
-The best strategy, is counter strategy
Your hero certainly has a role and core items. But, I've noticed that LOL and Dota are more about occasions. There are occasions that the cores are the best decision, other not. Always try to counter the enemy teams strategy and you are garanted to win.
Ex1: today, i was playing Veigar against Trind, Darius and Phanteon.
What did i do? I was building ap all the time? NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO
Its extra simple, we have 3 ad characters, what is the best thing to counter this? Armour, and to just render 2 of them useless, i bought an Thornmail, for Veigar.
And i did it before getting my boots upgraded. Won
Ex2: Darius gains 3 ap and 2 ad, tank among them.
Magic res and Maldredz. No matter how much they hitted me, i survived and killed 2 of them ALWAYS.
This concept is so simple but actually about 0,5% of the players do it. Everyone prefer to think that throwing a charizard on a squirtle will kill the squirtle. NO, counter! Always Counter!
(update: I still think counter-strategy is the best, but i'm noticing that it somewhat depends on the way the game is being played. Being practical: most of the people don't counter-strategy anyone, so over the past weeks i'm simply doing bunch of damage and i'm going pretty well on my win count because i build atk spd ad and no one makes thorn ^^' so, sometimes, just sometimes you may don't really botter about countering anyone...)
-Farm farm farm
Get last hits, but keep doing it all the time, or the most you can. Getting last hits is one of the keys to victory, and when i say last hits, i mean don't push lanes, JUST last hit. It must be continuous. If you must see something with 5% of life, you must last hit it. This should become instinctive.
In lanes, try to just hit things that will die with 1 hit. This will prevent pushing the lane thus granting you more farm. (and take advantage of towers! A tower will, most of the times, require 3 hits to kill a full health minion, so act like this, the towers hit a minion the 2nd time, be prepared to hit it.)
And remember: you don't need to farm big, just keep farming low, but be always doing it.
-Don't push lanes, till one of the towers is gone, or you are sure do hit one hard.
Farm farm farm, pushing will prevent you to do it.
-Gank the advanced, and don't ask to be ganked.
If you are a jungler, don't even botter to go to an advanced lane. If someone advances, hes asking do be ganked. If the enemy does it, fine. If your team does it, shame on them.
-Suports suport, Carries farm
If you are going to suport, just guarantee your carry don't die. DON'T TOUCH THE MINIONS, just be around getting xp.
(update: i'm noticing that, as i think (don't be too serious about this) any champ in LOL can carry (even janna...), pretty everyone can be a suport too. So if you are going to suport, just do it well.)
-Do your part
Mind your own business, don't botter about others behaviors. I'm serious, this will improve your game 1000%. See the match as a hero reunion. Everyone has their lives, and they decide to gather and kill each other. They are they, i'm am me, botter about your nose, not others. I'm not telling you do be forever alone, stick to the jungle and farm just for yourself, I've noticed that, at least for me, the more I cared about my part, my business in the TEAM, i started to team-play better. Paradox.)
-You can win games
I used to not believe in this. I've been proven wrong, YOU CAN WIN GAMES IF YOU DO YOUR JOB WELL DONE. This means that yes, you can carry a team. If you can't do it, or your team is reeeeealy doing a bad job, or you aren't so good as you think you are.
What i'm trying to say is that, in the past, i thought that if my team had at least 1 noob, it would be automatically defeat. No, if you are good enough, you can carry your team to victory even if you are a support (specially soraka ; ) )
The famous All Mid is an special case of the, let's call, "united team" strategy.
In pro games, the team usually walks together and united. When someone tells everyone to go all mid, it may work, because going 5 heroes in EVERY LANE usually works, if done in the wright moment, wright way.
How to (LOL)
Will only talk about LOL now, have to learn a loooooooooooooot in Dota to even think about talking in this area there.
The carry will be the "star" of the team. A good analogy is the movie stars, which get the central roles while the other actors act around him.
In LOL, not necessarily heroes we call Carries will always carry. LOL is so simplified that even a soraka can carry, if given enough farm. So, it can be like The Dark Knight, where Heath Ledger isn't the star, but "carries" the movie.
The carry will literally carry the team, he will get the most farm to push the team forward.
In the early game you are doing only 2 things basically: Farming and not pushing.
As a carry, you always want to last hit. Don't hit, LAST HIT the minions (to don't push the lane), or harass the enemy. Harassing i must confess it's a some kind of advanced topic to me that i don't understand too much, but I personally think it's more important to keep your eye at the minions more than in your opponents. Usually, harassing consumes too much mana, which is better spent (my opinion) in good ganks than harassing, but i must address an extra important note: an hero that recalls is equivalent to a dead hero (because you get free farm and your opponent is losing farm to you).
If you are carrying, you also want to stay on the lane AS MOST AS YOU CAN. If you recall, you loose xp and farm for your enemy, so be always on the lane if possible (that's one of the reasons why teleport is a great spell, you can recall, buy your stuff and teleport right away).
You should not push your lane because it opens opportunities for ganks for your jungler, and it gives more farm for you.
--Mid G. Carry
Don't know if there is a general consensus on when the mid game starts, but i usually use the principle that it starts when one tower has been destroyed anywere, because this opens a window for at least one hero to abandon his/her position to gank.
In the mid game, the carry can start to look for ganks, if this doesn't cost him too much farm at his/her lane. At this point, the carry should be starting to be the killing machine it is meant to be.
--Late G. Carry
At late game, all the team should start to be more united and thinking about positioning. At this point, everyone may have with somewhat 50% of theyr builds completed. When everyone on the map is "strong", team fights are usually decided by small details like positioning, timing, aiming, etc, because the numbers alone are somewhat balanced (or else, LOL would be an unbalanced game(it is, but that's not the point now ^^))
The carry should always aim to stay a liiiiitle away from the fight because he should have builded a looooooot of atk spd and ad, not hp nor deffense (most of the cases), so diving in is not your best option. Wait for the certain moment to strike and get some kills. Wuju style ; )
The solotop will, well, fight in the top, solo. Simple, but a little hard to master. Differently from the bot carry, the solotop should build some defense to endure his solo enemy. Building all attack isn't a good strategy, proven by experience (not only mine). Generally, good solotop champs are tanks or offtanks (an tank-carry hybrid), but other champs, like teemo can solotop (personaly, i don't know how, but it works).
Generally, it's a good strategy for the solotop not to push his/her lane too to open space for ganks by your jungler, and it gives more farm to you too.
Usually, the solotop shouldn't leave it's lane because it makes it very easy for your enemy to destroy or hit your tower hard. It's not uncommon for me to pass entire games on top fighting 1x1 until some team surrenders. It's very straight, he/she leaves top, you take his/her tower, you leave, you loose a tower. But, of course, you can leave it in mid game.
By definition, the jungler should farm ONLY in the jungle. He/she should always be spotting for possible ganks, aka advanced lanes by the enemies. Another important function of the jungler is to fill spaces in the lanes. Let's say your mid recalled to get mana. You, as jungler, has the obligation to CONTROL the mid lane, not push it, just keep it at the middle, or you are stealing farm of your mid. I emphasized ONLY in the jungle because when junglers get out of the jungle to do their obligations, they may want to farm in the lanes. Its FORBIDDEN for a jungler to farm in a lane if it isn't in mid game or to balance a lane.
Tip: keep an eye for suggested jungle routes for your jungler, specialy yi ^^ (Yi, The Master of Disaster, Guide by: Zoki must be cited here)
-Deal with the dragon
It's simple, there should never be a Dragon in the map. It simply gives 190x5(950) gold for your team. And it's the jungler obligation to kill it. If the team helps, good, if not, your the best to deal with it.
"If the dragon is slain, it will respawn after 6 minutes." -http://leagueoflegends.wikia.com/wiki/Dragon
Simple: gank advanced lanes by your enemies, don't gank advanced lanes by your team.
It's quite simple, you just have to help your carry to not die. Supports help the team with their abilities, not their builds (unlike the carries). All the lane's farm should go to your carry (not the xp obviously). You should never touch the minons.
And remember: supports WARD, it's their job. Junglers sometimes ward, it helps them, but the supports should spend their few gold in wards first, itens latter (that's why clairvoyance is a good spell for them).
Latter, you will help your team restoring hp, mana, cc-ing (crowld controling) the game, and other things like that.
(note about aura items: personally I hate them because they cost too much and I don't think they help the team more than regular items, but most of the support-heroes guides recommend them. Leave your opinion plz.)
And a remember: it's not mandatory for supports to buy the 4 gold generating items.
Note: this part is more intended to pub games. If you watch professional level play, you will see completely different concepts going on that, from my personal experience, doesn't work in pub games because they require more united teams, which almost never happens at the usual match-made game.
If you are on a lane, you should be concentrated on farming (not if you are a support). Try to not push it, because it negates you farm and gives it to your foes.
--Focus the carry or the most weak hero.
--Never, never, never focus the tank (maybe if you have maldredz).
--The carry, of all the weaks should stay a little away.
--The tanks should be in the middle of it.
--Focus. Ping a hero the team should focus.
Simple. If the enemy stacks hp - maldreds. Ap - magic res, magic res - magic pen. There are heroes that counter other heroes too, but that's a greeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeat list and a big discussion topic. But there's plenty of material on this matter.
-(Special part) Initiating
Initiating is initiating a team-fight. Good initiators are, generally, tanks. Casters can do it too with hourglass, but the point is: the hero who can endure most hits should always initiate, not yi ¬¬.
Among all the guides that helped me a lot in my journey in the MOBA scene, I have to special thanks 2 of them:
-Yi, The Master of Disaster
-Wukong - Don't Touch The Bananas (Solo Top Guide)
And I must thank the following people:
-Filipe Nogueira, wich have proven me wrong countless times, wich taught me a lot.
-Caio Pelichek Gonçalves, gave me good tips to improve this guide.
-And thanks everyone! My friends, enemies, the forums, the videos, the world, which is the greatest teacher of all : )
And more guides by DotaCinema
Good for beginners
Wukong - Don't Touch The Bananas (Solo Top Guide): Extra good guide to some concepts, and Wukong of course
Yi, The Master of Disaster: Extra good guide to junglers, and of course M. Yi