The supermids aren’t always your best option


First, I’d like to draw your attention to my awesome title for the champions introduced since season one launch who exceed most other champions at taking the solo lane: supermids. The reason I thought it up (I know, I’m so creative) was that I needed a way to talk about Vlad, Kog’Maw, Miss Fortune, etc. without typing that out every time I wanted to talk about the great carries in the game. Enough of that, though. On to the post.

I played two games tonight with a friend with hopes of breaking into the 1600s in ranked solo. I had been playing well all day and things just seemed to be going right. We lost. Both games. Hard. The biggest problem in both cases was our comp. In the first game my buddy was stuck in the mindset of 3s so he banned Singed. No biggie, still 3 bans, but we decided to joke around and ban Eve. That left a few strong toons on the board. Our opponent first picked Warwick so my buddy and I snagged Garen and Miss Fortune. Solid start for the team. Unfortunately, a teammate thought we couldn’t leave Kog’Maw on the board, so he picked him over some CC (Morgana was still available). Our fourth teammate chose Sona and I knew we were in trouble. Our fifth pick: Mordekaiser.

Sure, we had strong toons, but the sum of the parts was virtually nothing. Without crowd control to keep the enemy away from the carries, we got rocked. You can go too far in the other direction, too. For my next game I didn’t ban Amumu because frankly, a lot of people suck with him. The other team first picked Warwick again. I snagged Garen for a buddy and our second player picked Taric. We had said someone should get Amumu, but I was already thinking we were on the verge of being too tanky. With good DPS, though, we should have been fine. Our third player takes Shen and immediately locks him in, even though our fourth had said several times that he was picking Amumu, which he still did, leaving us with 4 tanks, short on damage. I had my friend pick TF in the hopes that we could stun them down. We couldn’t. Our outside lanes were getting worked and it was just a matter of time before our opponents had complete control of the map and we were too short on DPS to burn them down.

Even when the supermids are available, you have to focus on comp over individual toon strength. I asked everyone after the first game if they really thought we had a decent comp. The response was this: “You had Garen and Kog’Maw. Your comp was great.”



LoL: You gotta have team solidarity

League of Legends champ spread.Now that I’m back to winning, I’ve been able to spend more of my time thinking about game mechanics and less time wondering if it’s possible to set my horrible teammates on fire from great distance using only my mind. In all seriousness, though, when I’m in a losing streak I tend to lose focus on simple things, like paying attention to whether or not my opponent Fiddlesticks’ ultimate is up. I also tend to get super kill-greedy, which is why I’m making this post.

I finally had a chance to play some Arranged Team with two friends and enjoy some time on Twisted Treeline. It went well for the most part, though we did struggle in one game. Our success was largely due to our focus on team solidarity, meaning we were consistently targeting the same target, switching targets to protect one another, and generally playing as a team. It’s one of those things that’s hard to pinpoint when it isn’t working, but feels so damn good when it is.

If you’ve been having trouble stacking up some wins lately, try to get back to teamfighting basics. Always stick with your teammates, and try to position yourself so you can be most effective. For support, that usually means away from the action. DPS and tanks can be in the mix, trying to rip down targets as fast as possible. Whatever you do, though, make sure you move as a team.


LoL: Dealing with losing streaks

Summoner's Rift defeat.A couple weeks ago I went on a tear. I had been somewhere around 50 games over .500 for a little under a month and for whatever reason it seemed the stars had aligned. I was getting matched with smart teammates who could communicate and move as a group. Even when my teammates left a little to be desired, my opponents were always in far worse shape. My win count climbed and climbed until I plateaued sometime last week at 69 games up.

I should have seen it coming. Over the course of the past two weeks I’m now down 16 games, back to 53 over even. I know, that’s still 3 games positive, but when the swings come in batches of 15 games or so, I don’t really know what to do. As it stands I’m about as frustrated as I’ve ever been with the game. As my friends and I like to say, I seem to be losing the teammate lottery time and time again.

Once my score dropped below 60 games up, I decided I would go tryhard, choosing only the strongest toons for the map at hand. I rolled a bunch of games as Jax and Poppy on TT and had my first Twisted Fate match on SR in a long, long time. None of it seemed to matter. I carried the SR game handily, with 2 legendary streaks and a handful of turret kills. The rest, though, were mostly losses. I’ve had teammates AFK, teammates leave, teammates who start fighting with one another before the game even starts. The latest trend is teammates who refuse to get survivability. Two games in a row I played with an ally Morgana. I don’t know if you’ve seen it, but Morgana dominates on TT if she’s played well. The spell shield alone is enough to make any DPS champ climax with glee. Throw her ultimate down in a team fight and you’ve got nearly guaranteed victory.

There is one caveat: she has to live. You know what doesn’t help her live? All the blasting wands my teammates keep buying. Then there was the Ashe that refused to buy any health items against Sion, Nasus, and Shaco. I’m sure you can imagine how that turned out.

By this point I’ve given up on the tryhard comps. My last game I played Yi. I was legendary. We still lost because of the aforementioned Ashe. I’ve got my fingers crossed for some good action in the next round of games I have time for. I’ll be playing whoever strikes my fancy until I can turn this ship around. At the very worst, I figure my ELO will drop to the point that I can just steamroll some opponents and hope that the streak will turn in my favor.


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