Long Time No See

So it’s been a year and a half since I posted. In that time, we did a huge remodel of our home, living in rentals for nearly a year. I have also started a FT job again, giving up the freedom of consulting for a steady paycheck and the daily camaraderie (seriously, as introverted as I am, I did miss working with smart, talented people).

Last time I was playing League, I was choosing the shorter and faster-paced ARAM matches. As I’ve gotten back into playing League, I am playing a lot of Draft pick on Summoner’s Rift. I love the new Draft pick system, with the ability to declare one’s role in advance and each player choosing their own ban. A much smoother and much friendlier process. I have also noticed that the amount of toxic talk in chat is way, way down in that context. Nice to be able to play casually and make mistakes without aggressive, in-your-face chat comments.

I was playing a great deal of support but because I don’t have a regular partner to go bot with me, it’s a crap shoot as to whether my carry will do well enough that I, too, can do well. I’m going to start working on my mid lane play and see how that goes.

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History of League Meta

In my quest to improve my Classic gameplay, I found this forum post from February of 2013. A nice history of the meta game in League up through Season 2. Would love any suggestions on similar or better or more current sources of info of this type. Super helpful to me and I find it fascinating.

The History of the League of Legends Meta Game

Luv’in Taric in Season 4

So my new goal for 2014 is to buff up my Classic gameplay. I still love ARAM, and getting very close to posting 400 ARAM wins, but I’ve been avoiding leveling up my Classic gameplay for too long now. A new year, a new season…I figure it’s a good time to get started.

To begin, my plan is to tuck at least 100 Normal Classic wins under my belt before heading back into Ranked queues. I realize that may seem like far too few, but I did manage to snag a Silver V ranking before the end of Season 3. That being said, I’ve got to have a helluva lot more Summoner’s Rift experience if I want to consistently play Ranked well.

Despite the Season 4 changes, seems like no one ever calls bot support in Normal Classic. Luckily I love to play support! I am finding that Taric is a solid bot support, assuming a typical bottom lane on the opponent’s side, despite the Season 3 nerfs. His kit scales so nicely off armor, including his passive, and he has a heal and easy point-and-click stun. I’ve posted 3 or 4 wins in a row playing him.

On my to do list, however, is figuring out what I am supposed to do as a support when the team scatters to the jungle to farm in the typical ebb and flow of the game. I don’t find Taric, or really any traditional support, to be that good farming solo. I can ward but I’ve usually placed whatever wards I can by this time. Do I follow a teammate while they farm jungle camps? What is the general rule of thumb as a support during these game moments? Clue me in via comments but in the meantime, I’m going to see what I can find online.

Solo Top with Irelia

Probably one of the most miserable Normal matches I have played was Draft pick where I ended up playing solo top. Luckily I have Irelia, who even in Season 3 is still a solid solo top choice, but it had been forever since I had played her and I had never played her or anyone else solo top. So the last several days I have been honing my skills in Intermediate bot matches, where there is often a jungler and folks are generally happy to let you try out specific roles.

The good news is that I’ve gotten the basics down pretty quickly. Already had the right runes and masteries, which is a blessing, and I have read through several champion guides on LOLKING. It still feels weird to use my ulti to clear minion waves, but it definitely works when the situation is right and you need to clear quickly, such as helping out in another lane, and I have her basic gameplay mechanics well learned. That being said, I still haven’t tried to use Q (Bladesurge) to chase an enemy via enemy minions, likely because the situation isn’t as common in bot matches, and I need to remind myself to only take the first level of Q and put points into W and E, primarily because as you rank up Bladesurge on Q, the mana cost also goes up, and you want to be able to spam it if the situation calls for it.

I am still ending up a bit mana starved in the early game, so gotta figure out how I can help myself there, and I am pretty rotten at last hitting as a melee character (in comparison to playing ranged). But I think I am up for a few blind pick Normal matches to see how I hold up against real players. Wish me luck!!

At Long Last…

I have not played much recently due to work and sick kiddos though that is not entirely true. I actually have played quite a few beginner bot matches with my son and/or my son and husband in the evening after the youngest is in bed. But I find myself in a bit of a quandary about League. I am too busy and distracted to contemplate a Normal match, much less Ranked, the Dominion PvP queue is still usually far too long (boo! I adore Dominion), and intermediate bots are fine for honing your gameplay on a new character but don’t hold much challenge any more. Sigh. But I’ll queue for a quick intermediate bots match before I start dinner as that is about all I can risk with the potential for interruption from kiddos or phone or animals or other. At long last…even if it isn’t exactly the gaming fix I would hope for.

A Good Game

It was with some trepidation that I launched into a Classic draft pick normal game. I don’t like to do poorly and get yelled at, and well, that does sometimes happen. But a game of League was my treat to myself for mowing the front yard and now I am basking in the glow of an easy team win…and I was never yelled at, even when I banned Maokai instead of Malphite (hey, I was distracted by the dog barking like mad in the back yard and wondering if I would have to leave my ‘puter to settle things down, heaven forbid). Played Sona support and went 4/0/21. Aaaaahhhh….I love it when a game goes well.

Sona Classic Draft Pick Normal 03.08.13

Ranked or Normal?

Per previous posts, I had set off on a humble mission to reach Bronze in Ranked but after about 4 or 5 games I am reconsidering. For one, I could use some more Normal games under my belt in certain roles, particularly solo top and jungle. I am really weak on both as was evidenced by my miserable showing on Irelia as solo top and my to date wildly unsuccessful jungle attempts against bots.

The second reason is that folks take Ranked way, way too seriously IMHO. It would be one thing if I were in a higher tier but I’m down at the bottom with all the other ranked noobs. I expected there to be some slack within that group but there is always, it seems, at least one person who will moan and gripe the entire game. What is unfortunate is that Normal isn’t all that much better, so a part of me wonders if I shouldn’t just go for Ranked anyway as it’s not like I avoid the trash talk in Normal.

I am pretty good at ignoring idiots but there are those days when it gets under my skin as much as I try not to let it. League player behavior is definitely the topic du jour. It isn’t hard to find long discussions on the problem (a good one is here) and PAX East is even devoting a panel discussion to the topic.

I love the game too much to stop playing for sure, but am curious to see how I weather the griping in Normal and Ranked. Bots at least keep their mouths shut (oh wait, no they don’t anymore! ;)). And on a side note, one thing I actually really, really love about Dominion is that there is hardly ever any serious complaining, even in PvP. I think part of this is the extremely fast pace of the gameplay…you bitch, you die, and in short order.

Nice Win

Sometimes a Classic PvP match goes…well, pert near perfect. Just had such a match on Sona. Laned bot with Vayne. Pushed our lane perfectly. Started pulling 3 and 4 of em as they tried to shut us down but team helped out. Got Baron. Finished ’em off around 52 minutes. Good rhythm throughout. Was nice.

Now the dilemma is do I go to bed on a good note, or push my luck and try one more before bed? (PS I decided to savor the win and crawled into bed around 1am).

ROFL KS

Tried to get a Dominion PvP match but after a 20 minute queue and no match yet, I hopped into a Classic PvP match. Admittedly, my skills at PvP on Summoner’s Rift are at best average. Wanted to play Morganna but she got locked in quick so looked at team makeup and chose Sona. I can actually play Sona as support in Classic PvP and do well – she’s the one toon and role I am relatively comfortable with in Classic PvP.

The match didn’t go so well for our side. My lane partner, Akali, kept dying, and that was in good part due to errors I made. We got behind in the match as time passed and most of us moved to pushing or defending mid. At that point the other side got very good at singling me out in team fights asap and killing me. Again, I wasn’t playing all that great either.

Enough back story. I was with Morganna against one or two opponents and I killed one when he was down to like a few points of health. So did not mean to, but so did it. Morganna goes off about my ks, even after I apologized and said I wasn’t playing for kills. Morganna held that grudge all the way into the chat lobby post the match, yelling REPORT and explaining it was my ks. And I had all of 2 kills the entire 45 minute+ match!! ROFL.