This guide is made to cover more advanced concepts and examples than my other guides i have written, and assumes i do not need to explain what i consider to be more basic terminology or concepts i have covered in my General Guide (linked at the bottom of this guide)
should you have any questions past the information provided feel free to leave comments and questions as wished and i will try to get back to you quickly.
With the above mentioned, please enjoy my guide.
REVIEW- Lane Types
(please forgive the small review here, i just find it crucial to understand, however i have added some more content to this section from my General guide, and gone into the finer layers)
There are 3 core types of lanes, in order from least aggressive to most aggressive:
Generically there is a circle of power
Farm > Kill
Poke > Farm
Kill > Poke
But why is this?
A Farm lane plays very passively,so opportunities to kill them are rare. usually farm lanes have high sustain, however they are unlikely to kill an opponent. the positive part of this lane is that it's goal is to kill minions which don't run away and are consistent, rather than opponents. This being noted, farm lanes are by far the most consistent lane type.
A Poke lane is a very simple lane that tries to take one or two shots on their opponents whenever an opportunity arises, to try and force them out of lane. It's goal is to out-level their opponent, and to farm freely when the opponent is out of lane. Unlike a farm lane, this lane takes some risks to try and damage it's opponents thereby being more likely to be caught out and all-ind
A Kill lane plays very aggressively, making an effort to all in opponents at every opportunity. if their opponents engage for them or burn skills trying to poke them, it is an opportunity to start a fight they will normally win. Kill lanes usually have high damage output champions who are item reliant and therefor gold reliant. Therefore if they are denied kills this type of lane usually struggles until fed.
But no lane is ever purely one type of lane,
and most champions may have a preferred style, but can be played very differently. While i don't expect a Nasus to become a kill lane top before the 6 minute point, an aggressive Nasus can poke his opponent down with his e if wished, and do some unexpected damage if given the right opportunity.
What changes the lane type? Why change the lane type?
the opponents you face, as well as the team mates you have (primarily your own jungler)
Knowing the types of lanes and which usually overcome the other, sometimes taking a poke champion and only farming is best over a kill lane type opponent, consider changing it up to take advantage or deny your opponent.
Consider your jungler!
If your jungler is supposed to have a high amount of damage and early game ganks, then playing more passively lets your lane push and him gank easier. when junglers gank you can turn a bit of poking into a full kill.
Team composition: Bot Lane
Ill try to be fast on this as other parts are more important on this guide and you should have a good idea for this lane at least already.
There are, as said above, 3 general ways to play. and you should adjust based on your adc's play style, as they are the one who matters for fights in the bot lane. Hopefully you arent doing just a random game with a random player, but in the event you are, never fear just pick some champion you are flexible with and play by ear.
so who do you pick for what?
im not going to list all the adcs but i can give a few examples,
ashe, caitlyn, corki, kog maw,
Draven, Tristana, Jinx, Twitch
Varus, Ezreal, Lucian, Quinn
For supports, the more flexible role i will list more synergies to champions than i will the lane types. why? because supports arent meant to get kills, so there are only two real types, farm (sustain) and poke (that can harass and sometimes kill)
In picking a support you can either amplify your adc's strengths (usually for becoming a kill lane) or fill in the weaknesses. Such as, ashe and jinx have cc of their own, i would not worry about cc on my support if we wanted a more passive lane, but if we want kills i would love a Blitzcrank for solid one target cc that can overlap with the adc. If my lane has a Draven, i may consider a Nautilus, Leona, or Morgana for the hard cc to make Draven's q easier. Varus has a passive that can stack 3 times, much like braum's requirements for a stun, plus Varus needs a solid front line so he can poke and harass safely. to me that seems like a great match up of needs for their skills. Kog Maw and Twitch both are extremely squishy so they require a tank support almost exclusively.
so simply said, amplify or fill in the holes of your lane mate.
things to consider:
healing/sheilds for sustain
how many ranged abilities for harass
how much crowd control (and soft-slows and silences- or hard -roots and knockups-)
some of the most solid supports i use/suggest are in order from tankiest to most mobile:
Team Composition: Jungler and top or Jungler and Mid
As most duo pairs in ranked que are adc and support, this is usually less important,, however it can still be very effective to pair a lane with a jungler. and even without familiarity of your team mates, a jungle has a huge impact on the lanes. however as a support is constantly bot lane and simple math means that a 2v1 is stronger than a 3v2 for a gank advantage of numbers, mid and top lane have more importance to a jungler's potential impact.
so how do you make synergy?
there needs to be a decent amount of damage between the lane and the jungler to burst an opponent with one engage from HALF HEALTH to ZERO.
If neither the jungler or laner has strong burst there NEEDS TO BE a good amount of CC to make it work.
Nautilus jungle (or any hard CC champion) works well with bursty laners such as Victor or Ahri, While a Diana Jungle works great with a Brand or Oriana Mid Lane. Nautilus Also works well with a Sion Top Lane, because their CC time very well to keep a constant amount of hard CC on a target, which means getting a kill may take a while but is very effective despite their lower damage output.
Team Composition: Team Fighting Combos
As always, there is a deeper level to planning a team out than just having each role covered. to get a full team to have synergy is rare and generically you will be fine with just one set of champions with synergy, however knowing what works helps everyone greatly.
in my general guide i mentioned how to balance a team composition to bring a certain amount of expected values for major aspects such as survivability and damage output, here however we will talk about champion skills.
the most prominent example i can give you is Yasuo,whose ultimate can be activated when an enemy champion is knocked up (regardless of who caused the knock up). needless to say there are plenty of champions with abilities that are considered knockups, including Alistar Nautilus, Kalsita(ULT), Malphite, and more. in a Team with 2 other sources of knockups you can expect Yasuo to have constant opportunities to ult into a fight and be effective.
Another good champion to mention is Cassiopia, whom uses poison (regardless of the source) to create a lock on for one of her spells. it is a less common example compared to Yasuo's ult, but again easily improved by another source of poison such as singed and Teemo.
Another decent thought is how effective CC is. A team with all slows is countered by boots of swiftness, and a team of nothing but cc is minorly countered by tenacity items, however a healthy amount of cc in 1-3 champions is rather common, and usually found in a team's tanks. a solid cc champion such as nautilus has a variety of cc, while Sejuani have only a slow but a very effective one. Taunts are extremely powerful as well as fears, and often forgotten. Never undervalue a fear or any type of cc, just think about how much you need for your team.
Then we can get into the idea of simple combo-ing and chaining CC together. There are abilities that have massive area effects, such as snares and taunts, pulls or slows. and putting two on any team is usually a scary idea.
imagine a Nunu ult on top of an Ammumu ult?
Or an Oriana Ult into a Galio Ult? Malphite into a Wukong Ult into a Yasuo ult?
I dont need to tell you how to mix them because its hard to go wrong, just realize that meshing huge area effects together means a strong team fight capability.
some champions i feel that can impact this strongly are:
And yes there are more, but ill let you figure them out for yourself. find out what works for you.
Game Phases- The Pre Lane Edge
YES thats right, before the minions meet there are some huge important events that CAN happen.
First, if you are reading this guide you know that usually the jungler has asked for a leash and hopefully will get one, and that camps spawn on a timer you can check by holding down TAB and looking at the top of your game screen.
Now for the real part that makes it "advanced"
what events actually happen or can happen? what strategies can you use to get your team ahead?
Should you play like the pros in the LCS and LCK? should you copy them? well that depends on what you have practiced and what the team comps are, but lets get some ideas in your heads.
First up, a reminder the default is the jungler SHOULD start bot lane for the "strong side leash", unless they absolutely need blue buff to get a full clear. Top lane therefore SHOULD WARD TOP SIDE JUNGLE at 10 seconds to jungle camp spawning on the CORNER OF RED BUFF BUSH. this shows the red buff camp itself as well as most of the path inside it while letting the top laner make it back to his lane with his minion wave. Additionally for security if the mid laner is not helping with the leash they should guard the top side jungle entrance that runs by raptors and mid lane, until minions reach mid lane's outer (outer)turret .
THAT IS STANDARD
every game is different but the above is the most common practice i have seen, however there is a better way to do things, as the pros have often done.
Some ideas are these:
1.Jungler starting top lane with top lane leash, and the ADC Support can do Kruggs or Gromp on the bot side.
This potentially gives the bot lane a half level advantage over their opponents, while not taking away the jungler's farm. WHY? for the average clear time of a tank or fighter jungler, if they clear the top jungle entirely and then do their bot side buff camp, this will provide all the time needed for their first camp to re-spawn (or be within 20 seconds of re-spawning). especially on the first clear which many junglers do not complete before backing, a free camp is not considered a bad idea.
2. Sometimes the top laner can do a camp, gromp (or raptors with TP) if they feel they have a strong enough early game, to get the same experience boost as the previous idea, however as the experience is to one champion it means an instant lvl 2 starting lane at the cost of about 3-5 cs for the opposing laner (about 1/3 of a level). You can even get a small leash from the mid laner as well as long as the mid laner leaves before any camp minion is killed, however this is rare and not suggested.
3. The Double jungle clear.
Lets be honest, do you think that one opponent can take a tower even without an opponent in lane before level 4? For the most part i would not expect it unless it was Xin Zhao or another very squishy high damage per second ad champion. And with the all popular smite top lane for summoner spells being a common idea, it begs the question, why not use it a little more?
Junglers often have a hard first clear because they can not kill the main camp monster quickly and therefore take a lot of damage, and their smites alow the bigger camps to fall faster and grant them more sustain. most junglers save smite for red buff on the first clear because it gives missing health back, however there is a better way to start jungling.
Jungle camps are actually very easy with two smites and two champions, while at the cost of some gold, you can clear the jungle much easier if the Top laner stays with the jungler through the first 2-4 camps then TPs top. Additionally the early jungle camps are plenty of experience so that the faster paced jungling keeps both top and jungler on par with the enemy laners, if not actually ahead.
The real bonus however is that a double jungle clear speed and safety stops enemies from counter jungling. the enemy jungler cant wait in a bush cant take on 2 champions, and has a harder time counter jungling against a healthy opponent.
Most counter junglers clear their own buff then go straight to the enemy buff over river, however they WILL NEVER clear their camps fast enough to be there before a double jungle, nor will they have the HP to fight against a healthy opponent jungler.
SO all said and done,
ONE LANE can get a camp aside from the jungler, OR top lane can double jungle until about level 3 then TP top lane. This Should create a level advantage in one lane and/or a strong jungler who can GANK EARLIER.
Game Phases- Laning: Taking advantage
at its core, laning is about:
Farming/ Stacking if applicable
Poking opponents and then Pushing out or Killing opponents
All those aspects are simple, i dont need to teach you how to kill a minion, but i can tell you WHEN to kill a minion to best cripple your opponents. No matter what lane you are part of, you will want to manage your minion wave, but there is more than just getting all the creeps for gold, as important as that is, you also want to control where on the map the lane meets.
Every minion wave is created equal. they have the same damage output and hp as their mirrors. the only difference is what you ADD in damage value to your lane vs what your opponent adds. the more damage you do to your opponent minions the more likely your wave is to push up.
WHY? the more damage the sooner your opponent minions die, each minion lost means less damage they can deal per second to your own minion wave, and so the wave Pushes towards your opponent's turret as the front minions die and your wave moves on to fight the opponent castor minions. this is PUSHING UP, which eventually means the enemy turret will kill off minions causing your opponent to have a hard time last hitting minions.
Pushing up means you can be ganked, so we want the opposite unless our opponent lane mate leaves lane or you know the jungler is far away from you(and mid laner is in sight).
The opposite you might have heard about, FREEZING LANE
The art of ONLY last hitting minions, as closely as possible to their normal death. Rather than hitting a minion with 50 hp with my attack that does 50+ damage, id wait until the minion has 20 or less hp before striking. By carefully minimizing my damage output, the opponent is forced to push up unless they can do a better job of minimizing damage.
this means they are exposed to being ganked while i am not, and if i am any good at this after some practice i will still not loose much if any farm.
(this is wonderful in bot lane when your support is able to focus harassing the opposing laners with skill shots and a few basic attacks, because that usually causes them to miss some farm opportunities)
But we are not done yet, that is one way to torture your opponents in lane, the other is knowing when to add your own harass to your opponent.
If you do not have a minion to attack and you see your opponent move up to farm, you have an opportunity to hit them for free. do not hesitate. once they use their auto attack you can get an auto attack off with NO RISK TO YOURSELF. OR if they are moving up to hit a cannon minion (45 gold), use a skill and auto attack as they approach to keep them away from potentially last hitting it. Deturing and denying them minions, especially the cannon minions is huge for building up an early gold lead.
Assuming you harassed your opponent out of lane, push your wave up, and then back to base to cash in your gold difference, refresh any missing health or mana, and RESET THE WAVE.
unless your oppponent has TP up there is never any concern in doing this durring early game, and if they have tp, they will still have to try to farm under a turret, which is rather difficult. Just make sure to ward before you push, a jungler is always a threat after lvl 4 if you are not full health and half mana.
Game Phases- Midgame: Rotation and Objective Control
Sometimes you are the strongest player on your team, sometimes the weakest, but no matter what as long as the game is early you are useful enough to turn fights.
Midgame is about deciding to stay in lane or to rotate and help your team. so here are the real questions to ask yourself:
"am i going to snowball in my lane more effectively than if i roam?"
"Does my team need me elsewhere?"
(for example is a lane losing elsewhere on the map that i could help?)
"Is there an objective that i can take or help take for free"
(A team with good communication makes this a very important question)
"If i leave my lane, is my tower in danger?"
I cant answer those for you, nor can i say which are the most important, but i can say that as long as you do not loose anything and your opponent laner wont be a threat in the near future, you should probably roam and make some plays outside your own lane.
If you are a champ that snowballs prioritize setting up fights, if you arent, prioritize objectives like dragon and other lane towers OR helping a snowball champion on your team.
The best roamer (other than jungle obviously) is midlane, because it is close enough to walk to each lane, top lane with TP is also very easy to use to gank or simply change a team fight that has opened up on the map. Simple or not, numbers are huge in every fight and each player makes a difference.
What is ROTATION?
Not an official League team that i know of, but my own simple discription for a concept most people understand; Rotation is the shifting of one player to let another player roam.
to say it in an example, lets say mid lane is not free but bot lane needs help. if the top laner does not have TP up to use (or at all), he can tell the mid laner "ill hold your lane, go help bot", and as the top laner approaches mid lane the mid laner can move to bot lane.
What did this do? It shortened the amount of time for bot lane to get help by either half or a third. It also set up a faster objective opportunity should the next team fight end well. A dragon or early baron with all 5 of a team there to speed up the process is huge, and if not a major team objective, being able to freely take a tower or two with the extra members is very useful.
As for Junglers, the sooner you CAN gank the better, but never sacrifice your time waiting too long for a so-so gank chance. early game it is important to farm, and unless a lane is begging to be ganked i heavily suggest you simply do 2 full clears of your jungle and get some heavy farming and experience to get your items before the enemy jungler can. this means if you got a head start from an earlier mentioned idea, you can get 2 levels ahead of your enemy jungler if they fail eve one gank, and that also means you will be ahead of them in items, therefore more effective when you do start ganking.
Know your champion, and know when your lanes are pushed enough for a dragon. hold lane when a team mate needs to back, so you can soak a little extra experience and gold. After 3 items you should find yourself constantly involved in ganking and pushing for objectives, if you are not, then you are spending too long in your own jungle farming and not enough time is being spent on your team across your whole map.
Game Phases- Lategame: Kills, or Objectives
Objective Values are important to consider, so you know what to take and when. Below i have my objective list of values and why i give them such values:
Kills- 1 point
basic unit for reference to other objectives. if you are 4v5 or after 45 minutes consider kills worth 2.5 points as they help you recover/ gain more map pressure to take other objectives
Both Outer towers- 2 points
Every tower lost frees up map control, and it doesnt go away
Inhibitor Turret- 2.5 points...
An open inhib keeps opponents on edge and makes them react to that lane
Inhibitor - 3 points
Super minions spawning means that lane WILL PUSH unless your opponent send champions to help defend. this frees up all other objectives on the map and removes their pressure
Dragons #1,3- 3 points
Dragon #1 seems small but late game the bonus to the team's carries is noticeable with all the items that will be built. it can change close team fights dramatically.
Dragon #3 practically prevents your opponents from ever getting a 5th dragon. its not the value of the bonus but the fact that you removed your opponent's ability to threaten you in a normal game from dragon stacking. in otherwords, you now do not need to worry about dragon unless you want 5th dragon and are having a tough fight throughout the game.
To be honest, the bonus isnt much, the only real treat you get is if your opponents havent landed their first dragon yet, you have another 6 minutes free of that worry.
Dragon #4- 4 points
Again, it isnt the boost itself, though this bonus is noticable in wave pushing, and thereby threatening towers/inhib for opponents who do not react quickly, the real reason this dragon is important is because 5th dragon is going to be in the minds of your opponents, and they will fear it. While baron is strong, 5th dragon is arguably stronger in fights, and your opponents may go nearly suicidal to stop either from happening. in short you have a huge scare factor looming
Dragon #5- 6 points
Yes, 6 points, with 5th dragon you can destroy your opponents in team fights should they let this come to pass. if you get 5th dragon it means they either werent organized or were just outmatched, and your team got ahead enough to secure a lot of objectives. with this buff you can force objectives or team fights easily.
Baron- 3 points (4 if both teams have less than 3 dragons)
Always a strong buff, especially with inhibitors down, maximize the minion power by using 2 if not 3 lanes and enjoy your enlarged minion waves. however this buff in season 5 has taken a back seat to high numbers of dragons. DO NOT UNDERVALUE BARON. just realize that dragon stacking is now permanent buffing, and 4th/5th dragon are very powerful. so in late game you may consider dragons over barons.
Naxus- 10000..... do you even have to ask?
Nexus damage regenerates slowly, and if you can hit the nexus you have a high chance of killing it right then right there. and if you die the minions will likely finish it before they can be cleared away.
you are throwing the game away if you try to get extra kills off in your opponents base, and in ranked you are opening a huge opportunity for your opponents to kill you for free and turn the game around.
SO, what do you do in late game other than value objectives? What constitutes late game?
Late game is when both teams are nearing full builds on their champions as well as lvl 16-18.
the goal is to finish your builds and simply take the crucial objectives after a decisive team fight, or a series of fights where opponents are caught out of position and killed.
What do you do when you have full items?
TRY TO DISTRIBUTE THE GOLD. if you do not need more gold stop farming unless you need to defend an objective. Let your team mates take the gold. Constently look at your opponent's builds and re-evaluate your items to see if there is a better item you could trade something for.
Items- The General types and values
Ill be fast here, you should know what you are doing, but this is for reference more in the sections below.
Tank items: have health, armor or magic resist (or both), and normally some effect that helps you stay alive/ add passive damage to those who try to hurt you.
Fighter items: can be used by tankes and brusers but primarally are AD based items with some health and effects that involve just about anything. lifesteal, movement speed increases, passive sheilds
Hybrid items: have some combination of AD/AP, AD or AP with defenses, Sheen items
ADC items: Pure AD, or atack speed items. crit chance and life-steal are common.
Mage items: Pure AP based items with a wide variety of effects, and usually some cool down and mana regeneration.
Items- Chaining the Effects
Like all good things item slots are limited, and you want the most bang for the buck. you dont want to pay for what you already have if it wont make it better, and there are a lot of item effects to consider.
There are unique passives, and actives. speed ups and slow downs, different items with the same effects. and the truth is, while all items are not really created and priced evenly for their value,you will always pay for the effects even if you already have it.
i very rarely buy a Randuin's Omen with a Frozen Heart. They both have the "Cold Steel" passive that slows the attack speed of anyone who attacks me, and therefore i only need one in most cases as the effect does not stack.Getting a Sunfire Cafe with a Cinder-hulk item is redundant, you do not get double burn effects.
But what does synergize?
Abyssal Scepter reduces opponent magic resistance, and Cinderhulk/Sunfire cape and Thornmail give out magic damage. all of them are tanky. why not increase their passive magic damage while picking up a magic resistance item? it makes perfect sense.
Frozen Mallet slows down enemy movement speed by 30-40%, and the Furor enchantment from black cleaver or an enchantment on boots gives you a movement speed increase on hit. both together mean that you will very rarely let an enemy escape once you start hitting them.
Items- The Forgotten Situational Gems
(To be expanded)
Yomu's Ghostblade- Ever since black cleaver was reworked people have come to forget this great balanced item. coming from a gold income item (avarice blade) and a brutalizer, it grants good crit and armor penetration, with a free speed up and crit chance up active for those games where you just cant lock down a mobile target.
Hurricane- while it has seen more light since the kalista's introduction and the ashe update, this item has been underused and under-rated. so why is this item good or bad situationally? If you are building crit chance and an infinity edge you rarly will use this item, and instead favor the phantom dancer, HOWEVER if you are focusing attack speed or have a blade of the ruined king, which procs on hit damage from it's passive, hurricane may be too good to pass up. with a 70% atack speed increase and an added bonus of 2 exctra targets per attack (that also proc on hit effects) your blade of the ruined king will hit up to 3 targets with the passive, much much faster.
Blade of the Ruined King- As mentioned above it has a wonderful passive, and also has a less expensive build path than its rival the Bloodthirster. having several smaller components to make purchasing BoRK easier it is often an underused but very viable choice on its own right, but the passive and active effects make this not just an adc item but a fighter item as well. every hit procs % magic damage based on the opponents MAX HEALTH. yes its a tank busting item. EVERY HIT DOES 8% of a targets MAX HEALTH. theoretically that means 10 hits on one target is 80% of their health IF there is no magic resistance calculated. of course that isnt reasonable but hopefully that woke you up to the item's potential when paired with other attack speed items.
All sheen items have a place and a use. converting one type of damage to another, and adding high damage output to every build. just read each sheen item and find out what you plan to build as a whole. the most popular sheens are trinity and lichbane, but do not limit yourself from iceborn guantlets and the other sheens.
Twin Shadows- ever have a need for warding but dont have the money to buy wards constantly? ever need a little more movement or engage/disengage? ever want to KNOW where the enemy jungler is for no risk? with some mobility, ap, and cooldown this item is often overlooked and forgotten despite an amazing active effect. it sends 2 ghosts out that autoseek the nearest 2 opponents REGARDLESS of vision (giving you the direction for free) and vision of them upon impact WHILE slowing them by 15% for a short duration. in short this item is a "smart" ward that denies enemy ganks while building into mobility and damage.
Other Great Links!
My guide to more advanced League of legends strategies in the full Summoners Rift season 5
My guide to dealing with unusual champion picks and how to do it yourself in a positive way. (trust me the meta isn't always the best, don’t be blind like Lee Sin)
Other Great References i have found:
a great but out of date item guide, which explains how to judge item values, and also what types of items are good for certain champions and situations
a great guide for the concepts of Twisted Treeline Gameplay, however it is not updated with the new map adjustments of extra towers or the removal of the items "deathfire grasp"(and it's counterpart) or "feral Flare". please bear this in mind when reading