General Guide by James Bot
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Hello everyone, I am James Bot (NA Server).
After playing over 2000 normal games with low silver/high bronze players, I've noticed certain trends or bad habits that these players tend to follow.
I'm definitely not a pro league player, but I do understand certain fundamentals of the game that I'd like to share with lower elo players in our community that are seeking to improve. I hope you are able to use my knowledge in a positive manner.
Defending turrets by yourself
[*] The first issue I want to cover, is staying under turret by yourself trying to protect it from a greater number of enemies. They will take the turret, they will kill you, and they will snowball.
Don't be this guy. (love you xPeke)
If you know you'll get killed trying to defend an objective without getting something of equal or greater value in return, don't try to defend it. Deaths like these are pointless and give your enemies a bigger lead.
Watching the map and listening to pings
[*] The next thing I want to talk about is watching the map and listening for pings. If you have wards out but you aren't checking the map constantly, they're almost pointless to have placed.
For instance, if you want to go aggressive on the enemy top laner and their jungler is ganking bot lane, you have the opportunity to fight without the fear of being ganked; but you have to be watching the map, waiting for the jungler to step on a ward or appear in a lane for this opportunity to arise. Don't do anything too risky when you don't have vision on the enemy.
Listening for pings is just self explanatory. Is your mid laner/jungler spam pinging for you to fall back at bot lane and you have no wards out? They probably saw something that you didn't, and you should respect their ping.
League isn't about getting kills. It's about objectives, and denying the enemy team a lead. Don't focus on kills, focus on getting yourself and your team a gold lead, such as taking towers and dragons, etc. Also, taking turrets and getting ward control will pressure the enemy. When this happens, you'll have more dragon/baron control as well as more freedom to rotate around the map.
(Aka. NOT DYING) :)
I see way too many people pushing to the enemy turret without wards or knowledge of the location of the enemy jungler. Here are a few good places to ward at top lane to prevent being ganked. These wards can be mirrored to be used bottom lane as well.
This ward works for either blue or purple team.
This ward is mainly for purple side top lane or blue side bottom lane.
The reason why you shouldn't overextend without vision: You become an extremely easy target to gank. This starts the snowball effect, not only in your lane, but in everyone else's lanes as well. Read my chapter about snowballing near the end of this guide.
Putting out pink wards and buying wards on each back
As I've mentioned before, not being able to see where your enemy is because of lack of vision allows the other team to control the map and snowball like
"My first thought was, you're screwed."
That being said, as a support, buy a sightstone. Also, it isn't JUST the support's job to ward. Every other lane should be buying wards at their own expense in order to prevent and survive ganks. Make it a habit of yours to always have a pink ward out and to buy a ward or two..or three, on each back.
Encourage your team to ward as well (in a nice manner, afkers op). Vision won't win you the game, but it will give you a strong advantage to know where the other team is located.
How your small mistakes affect the rest of the game
Say you're playing Fiora top lane, your trinket ward runs out and you end up overextending without vision. About 3 minutes into the game, you get ganked by the enemy Lee Sin and end up feeding first blood.
Now, you have to think about the worst case scenario. Lee is now ahead in gold and experience, your opposing laner now has a lead on you in gold (from the kill/assist and all the creeps you weren't in lane for) possible damage on your turret and probably vision control as well since the other laner can probably outtrade you now.
Lee now has killed the enemy jungler from the lead you gave, taken their buffs which sets your jungler back which means less ganks because they need to catch up. You're an easier kill top lane without vision, and now Lee doesn't even need to come top lane because your lane is already lost if it doesn't get help.
Lee sin is now on the move to camp mid lane, setting them ahead which means *guess what*: 4 man ganks bot lane, yay!
After taking an easy double kill bot lane, a turret, dragon, and vision control things are looking pretty grim for your team.
Although this is a worst case scenario, it is possible for this to happen and you probably will see it at some point if you haven't already. If you make small mistakes every game and aren't improving your play or making up for earlier mistakes, you're more weight your team has to carry in order to win.
tl;dr sometimes kicking the snow causes an avalanche.
Champ Select and Team Compositions
Despite what a lot of lower elo people believe, the game is not lost in champion selection. You CAN still win a game, no matter what your team composition is (although it may not be an ideal comp). Study different strategies for winning besides relying on winning team fights, such as split pushing or making plans to catch someone out of position. Superior decision making and mechanics can help you win if the opposing team has a better team composition.
During champ select, you should be thinking of what your team needs and how your team will work when contesting the enemy team.
For example, if you're top lane and last pick and your team has a squishy jungler and support like Shaco and Nami, you probably shouldn't pick Tryndamere. Your team might now have split pushing capabilities, but you lack a tank and an initiator which means you have extremely low team fight potential.
On the other hand, if your team for example has a Sejuani and a Leona, you probably could pick a fighter/assassin such as Aatrox, Zed, or Irelia.
tl;dr Make sure your team composition is well rounded and don't ragequit if it isn't.
Positioning in teamfights
When you're setting up for teamfights, you want the tanky initiators in the front, and the carries in the back. That way, you can keep the carries safe from the enemy and initiate the fight when the time is right.
I had a game a while ago where our fed Akali initiated team fights, time and time again. She would get about 1 ult proc off, then get piled by their entire team and die. She continued to do this until the game was over. What she should have done, was let the tanks initiate with crowd control and jump in so we could peel for her as she cleaned up their team.
Communication and teamwork is what will really help you start to win more often. Most of the time in Bronze/Silver, people will jump in without pinging or with their team scattered about, thinking they can 1v5 or just raging at their team after they die. Don't be like that, it will only hurt your ranking and continue to aggravate you until you start understanding the simple mechanics of a team fight.
tl;dr Tanks in front carries in back.
This guide became a lot longer than I originally anticipated, sorry about the walls of text.
I hope my information was useful for you. feel free to add me (James Bot) in game if you have any questions. If you have any suggestions for my guide feel free to post them below and I'll make changes accordingly. Thanks for reading :)
Special thanks to TopLaneCane for the photos.