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The Three Lessons I Learned From Low Elo League of Legends

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I started playing League of Legends at the tail end of Season 2 with a group of people I met in the competitive and Youtube Pokemon Battling Community. When we weren’t talking about Pokemon, the skype call would be about League of Legends. At first, I really resented the game. The people that I used to enjoy talking to where all about League and not about the latest tier listing on Smogon. To be quite honest, I hated the game before giving it a fair chance.

When I was learning the game, post obligatory bot matches, I was so frustrated. These people were telling me to “last hit” and “flash juke”. I didn’t know anything. I couldn’t do anything these people were saying. But I still gave it a shot, and once I started to win more games, I started to have more fun. Once I hit level 30 I was pressured to do ranked. I never really cared about leaderboards. I used to on my Xbox with some friends. Like how I was Top 5 in Resident Evil 5’s multiplayer was released, and Top 10 for Bioshock 2’s multiplayer (for only a month, then I lost interest). Here are some lessons I learned from low elo League of Legends.

 

Lesson One: Stubbornness Gets You Nowhere, Be Flexible and Considerate

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I waited until Season 3 to begin my journey into the world of ranked League of Legends. It’s strange looking back when I first started the infamous method of playing League. I was placed in Silver V, which was apparently great because I didn’t have to deal with the hell that is Bronze Tier. After 100 or so games I climbed to about Silver 2, not the best but I was still new to the game. I didn’t know about rewards or anything, I was just trying to get higher on the leaderboards. When I started losing I began to resent the game and pigeonholing myself into only Top or Jungle. My stubbornness was making me lose games, and it took me not getting Gold in S3 for Victorious Elise and getting Gold 3 in Season 4 to realize it.

A common complaint I see with LoL players in low elo is that they think they are better than everyone else. In their minds they are the next Gleeb or Genja when they are just some guy playing a game, this is something I have seen everywhere from in-game to forums. I was placed in Gold 5 for Season 4, I won eight out of ten games of my promos and it felt damn good. Sure it was with my strongest role, jungle, but when I quickly made the advance to Gold 3 I played every role equally. I still thought that I could only top or only jungle. When I began playing with someone at low Silver, I donned the support role.

I am still learning but I feel like my stubbornness regarding what role I felt entitled to play was holding me back. I am winning games more often on a role that I never thought I would be good at and what I thought was boring. This applies to the “Mid or Feed” players that actually mean it. I understand that you are better at one role than another, but you hold your team back when you act like a child who wants that one toy at DayCare.

You need a willingness to play roles you are not used to playing, a willingness to expand your champion pool. This is how I am personally winning more games. I am not the most knowledgeable person when it comes to LoL. I know more than the average person, but I am willing to learn more to climb the ladder.

 

Lesson Two: Accept Advice and Apply It To Future Games, Learn to Take Criticism

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The person that has been helping me win games has a great understanding of the game. He has been giving me advice on when to initiate, how to poke, and when to back. He has also been giving me advice on builds, but not just what to build, but why to rush sightstone instead of tier 2 of my gold item etc. I listen and follow all of his suggestions, this is something I think low elo players lack, listening skills.

All too often, if you ask a jungler to change their path to help another lane get ahead, you will be met with open hostility and generally poor manners. I understand this is a videogame, and people will be inherently rude thanks to the anonymity of the internet and usernames, but people are only hurting themselves when they shut out their team members opinions and advice. You don’t have to follow it, just acknowledge it. You would be surprised with how well your team does when you aren’t telling your top lane to, “Shut the fuck up because he belongs in Wood V”.

A willingness to learn from mistakes and take criticism and advice gracefully will help not only you, but your whole team out. Games can be turned with the right attitudes.

 

Lesson Three: It is Just a Videogame, Climbing Is Not a Big Deal

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I’ve dipped into Bronze before (decaying sucks). The people there are so unwilling to learn, they are so stubborn, and most of all, they are OBSESSED with climbing. And that is the final lesson I want to end on. Climbing the ladder is not a big deal. You need to keep this mindset for every competitive game you play. At the end of the day, League of Legends will always be a game. Getting to Silver, Gold or even Diamond will only affect your status in a videogame. It won’t change your life (unless you get scouted by a pro team obviously). The pro circuit is massive for League and chances are you won’t be drafted to a team that will make it to the LCS. The best way to do it is this, relax and have fun.

You will lose all of your games if you take the game too seriously. That is something I learned when I stopped playing league for a few months (coming back only to prevent decay). If you find yourself yelling and put in a bad mood, finish the game, say GG in post-game lobby, take a deep breath, and move on. It is just a game, and I am actually having fun with LoL again with this mindset.

Winning isn’t everything, and sometimes you win more when you care about it less. Honestly, it’s best to have fun, learn as you go, and be flexible. You don’t always have to play your best role, it’s sometimes best to hear the advice of others, and you certainly don’t always have to focus completely in climbing.

I know I droned on a bit, but I appreciate you taking the time to read this. I was surprised with how much I learned about myself and about the game I was playing by changing my environment. I hope what I said got through, and you can start having fun playing videogames, like the developers originally intended. I am still Gold, and I know that is technically “low elo” but I wanted to share my experience and the lessons I learned with my peers.

About Zach Martinez

Freelancer here at Armed Gamer, North American Video Game Correspondent for Following the Nerd, and a regular on Examiner.com, Zach has made somewhat of a name for himself at the age of 23. He has been writing professionally for just over 5 years now. He doesn't care about resolution or frames per second, he cares about what matters most, the games. You can reach reach him directly at zach.martinez09395@yahoo.com.

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