10 Tips to Improve Your Elo

10 Tips to Improve Your Elo (+$25 RP Contest!)

It's been a while since I (or anyone else at Reign of Gaming) has made a tip list, so I thought we'd return to this classic format in today's edition of #VVinning. In League of Legends, you can win through skill or through the intangibles. Actual ingame skills like reaction times, positioning, and last hitting are key, but there are also non-skill factors; good champion selection and a level head will exponentially increase your chance to have a good game.

Today's list of tips take into account both of these things. Enjoy, and remember to read through the end of today's article for a chance to win $25 in Riot Points!

Tip #1: Don't rage (and keep a thick skin!)

The first tip of the day is rather simple. We've all seen the loading screen tips: if you flame one of your teammates after a mistake, you're more likely to lose. If you want to win the game, do not lower the morale of your team by arguing or making fun of their mistakes, no matter how bad they are. Even harmless comments can be taken offensively by someone who may already be angry from dying, and commenting on other players' mistakes is probably the worst thing you can do if you want to improve your rating. People have feelings, and if you hurt those feelings you are less likely to take home a win.

The converse is also true: if someone is verbally abusing you, the best thing to do is to keep your mouth shut and not respond to the ragers. Even if you cannot keep a level head, responding to verbal abuse will increase the likelihood of future negative comments. Don't blow off steam on other players. Instead, ignore or mute, and keep the emotions inside.

Remember, actions speak louder than words. If you make good plays later on the game, people will probably stop harassing you. Keep morale up: don't rage, don't respond to rage, and ignore negative comments. Do all of these things, and increase your chances of winning.

Tip #2: Improve your last hitting

A key term that many League of Legends players fail to understand is the ability to 'last hit.' Most people think of last hitting as the ability to kill creeps in a 1v1 or 2v2 situation with the benchmark target of 75-80 creeps by the 10 minute mark. What I define as last hitting is the ability to maintain creep score throughout the game, not just during the laning phase. Being able to autoattack creeps to death is all fine and dandy, but having 80 cs at 10 minutes is useless if you have 100 cs at 20 minutes.

If you're a solo lane, take advantage of your wraith camp when your jungler is busy. If your teams are poking each other ARAM-style and you can't help make a large impact before the teamfight, take the opportunity to take a nearby camp. If you're at low health in lane, consider killing the minigolems before you go back to shop. It's all the little things that count, and even the tiniest gold advantages may give you the advantage to win 10 minutes down the road. Every creep that dies to enemy creeps is a creep that you could have gotten.  There are only a finite number of minions that spawn every 30 seconds, and team gold is not being optimized unless every one of those creeps is killed by a champion. Kill every minion you see on the map and you'll launch yourself on a pathway to success.

Tip #3: Win the game, not the lane

Even if you die in your lane, it isn't the worst thing you can happen. So what, you're behind a few hundred gold. Just last hit, and remember: if you're being camped by the enemy jungler, that means the other two lanes are free to farm without jungler interference. Remember, it's a team game, and you don't necessarily have to win your lane in order to win the game. As long as you keep pressure on objectives and fulfill your role, there is plenty of time to bounce back from a disadvantage.

On the other hand, understand the macrogame. It doesn't matter how fed you get in lane because you can't 1v5 the enemy team. In order to take advantage of your winning lane (or minimize the losses from your lane) you should push lanes and teamfights in optimal circumstances. Conventional wisdom says "win lane, win game." I disagree. If you lose your lane, you can still distract the other team by pressuring objectives before and after teamfights. Sometimes, it's actually better to follow your team into a bad teamfight and make a minor impact, rather than staying out and getting 4v5 aced. At the same time, you need to recognize when somebody is going to die, because if you get caught while saving a dead teammate, you're making the situation worse. A team that keeps their lanes properly will minimize losses after a bad teamfight and maximize their chances to make a comeback.

Tip #4: Learn to support and jungle

Respect the damn pick order. If you are last pick, you shouldn't call mid and expect to actually get it. Chances are that you're going to end up either as a support or as a jungler. This is much more likely in the bronze and silver ranges where there aren't actually jungle and support mains, so you might as well learn these two roles. Not everybody can be the hard carry on their team, and somebody has to support.

Not knowing how to support is detrimental to your Elo as it will mean that 20% of your games will be automatic losses. If you learn how to support, you will become much more versatile in your gameplay and gain map and macrogame awareness. The same goes for the jungle role: if you learn how to control the flow of the early game and the mentality of a jungler, it will also increase your awareness and skill in lane.

Every role is specific and has a different playstyle. Being familiar with every single role is key, and just because junglers and supports do less damage doesn't mean they aren't as important as the carries. Learn every position, and you win more games.

Tip 5: Stop dying so much

If you're dying a lot in ranked games, you're probably not winning too much. Dying, even to get a kill, isn't always worth it. If you are ganked by the enemy jungler and you take one person down before dying, it still isn't worth it because the other team profits from assist gold. A 1 for 1 trade isn't always worth it, but a 1 for 0 trade always is. Pick fights that you can win without dying, and don't go 1v3 hero mode on the other team.

Try to play safely. Remember, one kill is worth 13 creeps, and if you can take a 13 creep advantage over your enemy, it's basically the same thing as killing them (minus experience gains/losses). If you're still dying too much, examine your decision making: Are you following caught allies into certain death? Are you split pushing without wards? Are you counterjungling the enemy without knowing where anybody is? If you answered yes to any of these questions, you should consider adjusting your playstyle to reduce deaths.

Remember, the enemy team gets at least 300 gold every time you die. If you die 4 times a game instead of 5, you're giving your team a 300 gold advantage. Understand your mistakes, fix them, and carry your team to victory.

Tip #6: Know your champion, and know your role

Don't just play something because its overpowered. You have to understand why its overpowered. Don't play something you've never played in ranked just because somebody forgot to ban it out. Just because a certain champion has a 55% chance to win a game doesn't mean that YOU have a 55% chance of winning a game with that champion. Some champions are simply incompatible with certain players, and the sooner you recognize this fact, the sooner you will get better at the game.

When picking a champion in champion select, you should always try to pick a counterpick that you are skilled at. Playing a champion with a natural advantage in lane is an easy way to swing the odds of a game in your favor. At the same time, you have to know WHY your champion counters another, and the same goes for your item build. Rushing a armor doesn't do very much if there are 3 AP champions on the other team; instead, consider building a Hexdrinker to increase your marginal health against magic damage.

The more you play the game, the more you understand the intuitive counter picks and counter items against certain champions and team compositions. Since there are an infinite number of team and item compositions, you have to carefully consider each and every decision you make, as well as understand why you are making them.

Tip #7: Understand that you can't win every game

Some games, things just won't go your way. Giving up first blood greatly reduces your chance to win the game, and getting heavily countered in lane will further reduce those chances. Sometimes, every lane (and the jungle) will lose except for you, and there's not much you can do to make up the gold loss. Recognize that a jungler can't be in all three lanes at once. Junglers can usually only help out one lane, and even camping two lanes will punish their own ability to farm. If multiple lanes are losing, there are only so many things a team can do to orchestrate a comeback in individual lanes short of grouping. Recognize when your lanes are lost, and try to group and push towers to regain a gold advantage.

Comebacks are always possible, but the chance to win decreases every time someone on your team dies. In the grand scheme of things losing one game because of your teammates won't heavily affect your chances to rise in rating, especially in the long run. You have to recognize that some games are not winnable at a certain point and move on to the next ranked game.

Tip #8: Ward up

I'm sure this is something that you've heard over and over again over your League of Legends career: Buy a ward, save a life. Wards are key to making it out of the laning phase alive, and prevent you from getting caught in the end game. You'll need wards to prevent deaths by overextension in your lane, and you'll need even more wards when you decide to split push behind a tower as Singed.

Be smart, spend 75 gold, and pay attention to the map to prevent an untimely death.

Tip #9: Don't waste your summoner skills

This is simple: don't ignite if you can't get a kill with it. Exhaust only if you think you will prevent a death. Flash only if you think you can save yourself or if you can get a kill with it. Summoner spells are some of the most important skills in the game because they can both cause and prevent damage. If you blow your Flash when you cannot escape, you are only gimping yourself for the next 5 minutes of gameplay. Summoner skills are something you should preserve and only use in cases of extreme emergency especially as you enter the later parts of the game.

Tip #10: Have fun and don't worry about your Elo!

Remember, it's only a game. One game doesn't make a huge difference in the long run, and it's more important that you have fun playing the game. After all, why would you play League of Legends if you don't enjoy it? Don't worry about your mistakes (but recognize when they happen!), don't worry about your teammates mistakes; just concentrate on having as much fun as possible while playing the game.  Your mentality is key while playing: have fun and you will perform better. 

Most games aren't about how hard you stomped the other team. Matchmaking is set up so you are just as likely to get stomped as you are to stomp another team. Just be a humble winner and gracious loser and you will have fun. Even if it's your final loss in a promotion series, don't sweat it. You'll get back eventually. Just back sure you have fun playing the game as you climb in rating.

Don't play League of Legends for ratings and milestones; use the game as a way to have relieve stress and enjoy yourself. The game isn't worth playing if you're not having fun.

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You must do both of these things in order to win. Contest winner will be randomly selected at 11:59pm, April 10, 2013 and notified via private message. If I (arbitrarily) judge that there are enough contest entrants, I may throw in an additional $10 RP card as a second place prize.

 

 


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Comments

  • #83 Cerbereth

    Tip number 4 is 100% true. I mean every time I see someone type I can't support or jungle I just laugh to myself so what your useless 40% of the time.

    Pretty much half my games are support or jungle and if you are able to support or jungle noticeably better than the enemy support or jungle boom chances of victory jump up. From my personal experience people put some effort into jungle, but when it comes to support I see all kinds of half assed attempts at it. They don't have the right runes, they don't know what to build, they really wanted mid so they just went ahead and decided to support their ap mid. Then their bottom lane collapses and the game is over in 23 minutes generally with harsh words between the carry and the support.

    Good times in bottom lane.

  • #84 Nevran

    Also, there is so many support right now that people can't just say "I cant support" when you have such a panel.

    Want a kill lane? Leona, Blitz, Alistar.

    Want a passive lane? Sona, Soraka, Nunu.

    Want a push lane? Nunu.

    Want a harass lane? Sona, Lulu, Zyra

    Want a defensive lane? Nami, Janna

    God, there is so many champ (without counting some nice AP mid who can do well in bot lane, like Orianna, Fiddle, Karma) in supporting right now, just work on it.

     

  • #77 Nevran

    As a person who main jungler, I think we, jungler, need to also chill the hell out. Because we get often flamed, we think that everybody in lane is an asshole and that ganking isn't actually something that should come often.

    It is wrong. The jungler is the X factor. You are the man who make a 2 vs 1 situation, who deny some CS for the opponent, who help to destroy turret, etc.
    Ganking is a luxury, it isn't a bad idea to summarize it at that, but ganking is a necessity (except from some jungler) if you want to create these occassion for your team.

    So, people who spam mid/top lane, ofc, you shouldn't flame your jungler. But if your jungler never gank, never ward, don't bring any presence... He is stupid or play a passive farm jungler (Yi, Trynd, Fiora, GP, possibly Nasus early).Also, except some rare jungler, if they don't gank before they are level 6, trust me, they are also stupid or arrogant.

    Like I said, don't flame the support/jungler but don't let them disguise themselves as 'victim' when they didn't brind the strenght of their role.

    Jungler friend, also understand that us, jungler, are asshole who are always happy to blame the solo laner to lost his lane by himself so we can be never blamed in our opinion.
    We play jungler for a reason and they solo lane for a reason, let's make an understanding from BOTH side.

    Last edited by Nevran: 4/5/2013 6:08:26 AM
  • #78 pumis

    Quote from Nevran »

    As a person who main jungler, I think we, jungler, need to also chill the hell out. Because we get often flamed, we think that everybody in lane is an asshole and that ganking isn't actually something that should come often.

    It is wrong. The jungler is the X factor. You are the man who make a 2 vs 1 situation, who deny some CS for the opponent, who help to destroy turret, etc.
    Ganking is a luxury, it isn't a bad idea to summarize it at that, but ganking is a necessity (except from some jungler) if you want to create these occassion for your team.

    So, people who spam mid/top lane, ofc, you shouldn't flame your jungler. But if your jungler never gank, never ward, don't bring any presence... He is stupid or play a passive farm jungler (Yi, Trynd, Fiora, GP, possibly Nasus early).Also, except some rare jungler, if they don't gank before they are level 6, trust me, they are also stupid or arrogant.

    Like I said, don't flame the support/jungler but don't let them disguise themselves as 'victim' when they didn't brind the strenght of their role.

    Jungler friend, also understand that us, jungler, are asshole who are always happy to blame the solo laner to lost his lane by himself so we can be never blamed in our opinion.
    We play jungler for a reason and they solo lane for a reason, let's make an understanding from BOTH side.

    Today I did see YI jungle who didn't gank bottom lane not even once. Even when enemy team was overextending right next to our turret about 15 minutes straight. He whine about wards while ignoring that if he comes from enemy jungle through tribush, he could easily gank that lane before bottom lane could even react in time. Not to mention that YI is fast as hell and because of that it's even possible to do lane gank with him.

  • #79 Nevran

    In the case you named, your Yi should have gank (if he wasn't on top/mid or with low life). Yi is like Hecarim, he don't care about ward because of his speed boost. He just have to activate Highlander then rushing on the ennemy carry. Every jungler, even one without CC, should try to gank someone who is over-extending.

  • #80 darkChozo

    It depends. If bot lane was fed, a jungler gank can just result in more free gold to the enemy carry, particularly if the jungler/ad/support don't have much CC between them and the enemy is warding properly. A Yi jungle can bypass wards, but if he charges into, say, a fed Alistar/MF combo that are tower camping his duo lane, he's liable to just get locked down and bursted. 300G + jungler buffs can easily turn a losing lane into a lost lane.

    Not saying that it's always going to be a bad choice to gank in that situation or anything like that, but to suggest a hard and fast rule there is a bit naive.

  • #82 pumis

    Quote from darkChozo »

    It depends. If bot lane was fed, a jungler gank can just result in more free gold to the enemy carry, particularly if the jungler/ad/support don't have much CC between them and the enemy is warding properly. A Yi jungle can bypass wards, but if he charges into, say, a fed Alistar/MF combo that are tower camping his duo lane, he's liable to just get locked down and bursted. 300G + jungler buffs can easily turn a losing lane into a lost lane.

    Not saying that it's always going to be a bad choice to gank in that situation or anything like that, but to suggest a hard and fast rule there is a bit naive.

    Bot lane wasn't fed in this case. I was playing in that lane which is why I'm still bit frustrated about this. I did let them push waves near tower in order for our jungler to have easy gank, but instead he decided not to do it. As far as I know Sona and vayne has enough cc for gank.

    I main as jungle/support so this is why it's even more frustrating when someone yells in chat "JUNGLE" and then does poor job in perfect situation. This is why I usually let them push when I play ADC. So that jungler can have easy ganks.

    Edit: Also as I mentioned situation was like this for at least 15 minutes.

    Last edited by pumis: 4/5/2013 1:58:18 PM
  • #75 Insanitism

    Cs benchmark is trap, if mid is camped but you try cs, you willl die, if you get in range of targeted poke every time you cs, you will be killed, if you use spells you will oom, if your teams jungler is being invaded and you want to help, lose cs, so many reasons for you to lose cs, its not hard all to cs perfectly, even if ooked but so many other factors make missing whole waves easily...

  • #73 user_969065

    You should talk about champion pools and picks in your next one.

    Other words great job look forward to more Ways to win!.

  • #72 Itachi

    Great article, but I would like to point out that #9 is generalizing and over-simplifying. For instance, sometimes it is optimal to use Ignite even when you won't get a kill, just to push someone out of lane, deny CS, and reap 5 AD & 5 AP.

  • #76 Insanitism

    True, but if they are going to return to lane with an advantage, its not worth the risk

  • #85 Itachi

    Well it's not an advantage for them if you deny them enough gold and tower pressure

  • #86 user_969065

    He means that Summoners are more important than your QWER and 123456 item slots for their ability to prevent otherwise avoidable deaths.  

    You can use them to press an advantage over a player but you make yourself vulnerable in team fights and ganks.

    and oversimplification is important when going for improvement rather than maxing potential.

  • #71 DaarkPaladinX

    For tip 4, it's easier said than done.  People treat the support like a "ward vending machine" and fail to realize that EVERYONE should ward, not just the support.  The support needs items as well to help the team gameplay (mainly the aura items).  Also, the reason why you don't see a lot of people supporting or willing to support (particularly in bronze and silver tier) is mainly because they feel that supports are "boring" and don't contribute much in teamfights.  What many people don't realize is supports usually have a hard CC as means of peeling for your carry.  For example, using Lulu's W while Katarina is ulting can REALLY save your adc's and your team's life.

    Also, I would also like to say that jungling is the hardest role in the league and requires much higher learning curve than support.  The reason being is that you need much higher map awareness than support during the laning phase.  In fact, jungling is so hard that it's easier to learn the hardest adc in the league (Ezreal or Vayne) than the easiest jungler (Nunu and Warwick).

    And I also like to point out that while you always can't get the role that you want all of the time, you still forget the importance of communication and compromise when it comes to champion select.  Knowing the player's proficiency in every role is important when organizing the team.  You can't expect everyone to be "master of all."  If so, we wouldn't have the MMR in the first place.  Even professional players specialize in one or two roles and they aren't always considered to be "master of all."  The thing I don't like about forcing the pick order is that you aren't considering other players abilities and skill level in each role and not considering other people's strengths and weaknesses.  If you often force the last pick into support when the last person specifically told that team that s/he isn't good at supporting, then you ARE more likely to lose the game unless you have good team coordination.  I tell you from my experience that when I often land into jungling (which I completely suck at), I warn my team that I'm bad at it and I won't 100% guarantee victory for the team.

    Also, another thing at add in the tip list.  If you lose a game, you are more and more likely to rage when you lose another game.  I think Riot should add this tip: "Try to take a break from ranked games and League of Legends once in a while, particularly if you are losing a lot."

  • #65 Arcane_Azmadi

    I agree that it's still possible to lose your lanes and win your game and one of my wins yesterday was based on that. We got kicked around pretty badly in the laning phase (I got beaten top with Kennen by Ryze- yeah, both teams were running dual AP) and I think we lost all 3 of our outer turrets before we even got our first. We actually lost our mid inhib turret really early and looked like we were on a hiding for a shitkicking, but at the very start of the game I'd explicitly pointed out to the team that it didn't matter if we lost early on, we shouldn't surrender early because we had a late-game teamfight team (Kennen, Jarvan, Vladimir, Janna, Sivir). Sure enough, we started winning teamfights, regained map control and eventually won comfortably.

    But yes, sometime you have to know when you're sunk. If we'd been in the same position while playing an early game teamcomp, we probably would have surrendered because things would have only gotten worse, not better.

  • #63 Khoral

    Tip #6 should be joined by this short but important video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=FlYRJOW-JD4#t=16s

     

    Nice article, as always :)

  • #62 sarkhon

    What bothers me most about these "Buy a ward, save your life" comment is that people who are really far ahead in their lane will stop warding, because ultimately, the enemy laner can't kill them anymore, and even with a gank, chances are very likely that they won't actually die to the gank.  Also, over confident summoners will fail to buy wards because they have too much pride or confidence, they are pushed to their tower all game, etc, and now suddenly your jungle is open.  As a jungler main, nothing annoys me more then my team wondering why I'm two levels behind and starved on items when my jungle has become the enemy jungle.  Now, when my team isn't warding, I try to provide wards, but if I've lost two buffs a big wraith and a big golem by 12 minutes, chances are very likely that I can't afford excess wards, and very likely the enemy jungler is going to be ganking and more farmed than me. 

     

    TL;DR, Buy a ward, save your jungler.

  • #61 Migotliv

    Great tips, I can sign under pretty much every last one of them. Of course some people can argue that there are exceptions to every rule, however these rules followed on a daily basis will help you in the majority of situations, and the more people adopt them, the better and nicer the LoL community will become.

  • #60 uncle_nashor

    Good points.

    Except the first one.
    Now it would be perfect if no one would flame and rage obviously. I have zero tolerance and mute most of people on my games cuz there is never anything helpful on chat.

    Though... I dont flame myself for my own reasons, but if this was true how is it possible that higher elo and even pro players get banned because of toxic behavior?

    There will always be ''IWillDominate''s and thats the way of this game. I would see this good advice on ''how to make lol better place for everyone'' or ''how not to be toxic player'' but actually gaining elo? no this is not needed, toxic scumbags gain elo aswell, therefore your first point is not valid. And there are nice people in lowest of all divisions aswell, you can act nice and still make zero difference and lose against 5 toxic players who spam chat constantly.

    Call me cynical but behavior and your loyalty point gains are not related.

  • #64 Dankaw

    Actually, not raging let you focus on game. If ie. random nocturne pisses you off so hard you can't stop flaming him, you gonna have tough time dodging skillshots, csing, looking at map etc.

    OFC there is routine in something you do too. Myself, i was hardcore player in CoD 2. I was so good and knew maps and typical paths so good, i could maintain same KDA ratio when i had headache as when i was fully aware what i'm doing. It happens in everything we do, in league too. That means even the jerks can be challengers.

    Last edited by Dankaw: 4/4/2013 5:07:54 PM
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