Be Shapeless, Formless
In League of Legends, there are more than 135 champions – each with a minimum of 4 abilities and 6 slots for combinations of over 100+ items/wards/trinkets. For every champion, there are nearly infinite variants due to builds, runes, and masteries. Each summoner playing a champion adds an additional layer of variables according to their own play styles, mentalities, and skill levels.
Biweekly patches with buffs, nerfs and new champions cause the game itself to change constantly and consistently. Take just a few months off and you’ll feel a difference. Take a few years off and it may feel like playing a different game entirely.
With so many different permutations and mixes, every match is a unique experience. The changes keep the game fresh but also make it necessary to stay on your toes.
To succeed in such a dynamic environment, you’ll need to be versatile. Versatility is your ability to play well in whatever circumstances are thrown your way. Can you react, adapt, and adjust? Or, is your style rigid and predictable?
Take a quick listen to Bruce Lee’s famous quote on water for some insight:
Reflect on what he means for a second and apply it to League of Legends. Is your game “like water”? Can you perform well at every stage of the game from laning to team fighting? Do you find comfort in both carrying or providing peel and utility?
To reach your full potential you must be able to bend but never break. When challenges arise, you be able to transform your mold according to what’s needed.
By the time you finish reading this Decompilation, we believe you’ll have a much better understanding of how you can improve your Versatility. Adding just a few of these techniques and mentalities will help your accelerate climb.
Calculating your Versatility scores
- This score evaluates your ability to adapt your item choices and build orders.
- The best players know the optimal build paths for every circumstance. They know what to do on the fly and can adjust to what’s needed instead of using the same build every game.
- Consider tailoring your build depending on factors such as:
- How long it will take to hit your power spikes
- Whether you’re ahead or behind
- Your lane match up
- Team compositions
- This score measures your play across the different phases (Early, Mid, and Late).
- Some players are better at laning – others may be better in team fights. If you kick ass at all stages of the match, you’ll have a great Phase Play score.
- This score considers if you can play well despite winning or losing.
- If you’re the steady rock that can adjust and still perform regardless of if you’re ahead or behind, you’ll do well here.
- This score is impacted by…everything!
- If you play optimally for positive measures and metrics while minimizing negative aspects, you’ll have a great score here.
- This represents the whole shebang, it tells you how close you are to perfect as a player.
Wise Words from the Pros
Time to flex!
It’s that time again. Here are some key advice pieces curated by our analyst, Hewitt “prohibit” Benson.
Broaden your horizons
- Picture the game as three distinct parts (early, mid, late)
- If you’re only good in the lane phase, it means you hurt your team for 2/3’rds of the match. Aim to be a threat the entire match.
- Be honest with yourself to understand where you need the most work and use that as a focus to improve your overall play.
Practice different skill sets
- Separate each phase into its own separate skill sets to better understand how to practice and hone your abilities.
- Early = trading/last-hitting/wave control
- Mid = skirmishing/objectives
- Late = positioning/decision-making
Adapting to situations
Thrive in good times and bad
- League matches will always have their ups and downs – be prepared!
- Aim to thrive no matter the circumstances.
- Don’t give up when you’re behind and don’t underestimate your opponent or relax when you’re ahead.
Have a back-up plan
- Autofill happens, here are some alternatives to raging or holding a role hostage:
- Have a secondary role you’re comfortable with. If you aren’t as confident, play safer and more towards utility instead of looking to carry.
- Be honest and ask for your primary role nicely. Sometimes versatile teammates will be willing to swap a role with you.
Learn flexible champs
- Versatile champs that can flex to multiple roles are very useful for Autofill.
- For example, as a Mid main, familiarize yourself with champs such as Karma, Vel’koz, or Brand that can flex Mid or Support.
- It’s often better to play a champ you’re comfortable with in an off-role, than to play a champion you’re unfamiliar with.
Take the time to really learn
- To expand truly your champ pool, you’ll need to invest the proper amount of time for learning champs.
- As a rule of thumb, it takes about 10 norms to get the hang of a champion and 20 games to really feel comfortable.
Master beyond mechanics
- Beyond mechanics, have your builds, runes, and masteries down.
- Do your own research and study pros and other high-level players that use your champions.
- Find builds that you can fall on for different situations.
The key to Versatility isn’t mastering every champion or memorizing every build (although that certainly helps). At the end of the day, it’s about never being unprepared. It’s about never being out of your element.
Find what works for you in different situations and always keep an open mind about how you can better adapt and react to challenges. Every lesson learned is a step closer to being like water.
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