League of Legends – Elo Hell is real

With over 30 million active users “League of Legends” boasts the title of the most played videogame in the world. It is by far one of the best real-time action games that have been around for a long time. If you would like to know more about the history of the game and a more thorough introduction to it, you can check the official RIOT games website for a variety of information on it.

So what is Elo Hell? Here you can find a definition and a bit more information on it.

I can’t say you pass Elo Hell once you are in Gold 5, but it certainly gets better and you get the Victorious skin too plus the shiny border for next season. There are less afk, trolls and feeders. Ok…maybe the amount of feeders aren’t getting dramatically lower, but the point is that people in Gold tend to play for the win more often than people in the other lower leagues. Personally I found that in around 10 matches I get 2 or 3 in which I have a feeder or a troll. Afk people here really have connection issues and it rarely gets to be a rage quit situation.  However I saw trolls in Diamond tier too when watching streams, so as the article above said: “Every level in Solo Queue is ELO Hell.”, but more so in Bronze and Silver.

Let’s get down to business though. How do you get out of Elo Hell? I will give you a few tips that have helped me pass the dreaded Silver League and become a fully-fledged Gold 5 scrub. I am speaking from personal experience in every point I make.

  • What happens when I don’t get my lane?

Ok. This one is pretty much what I had to deal with once I started playing ranked. You know the times when you get a guy on your team that goes: “Can’t play support because I have no champions for that”. You don’t want to be that guy. If you want to play ranked, buy enough champions for every lane, preferably 5 or more if you can afford it. You’ll have all of them soon enough anyway, but try to have enough to be able to play a lane if you’re forced into it or you get banned out.

  • How do I actually get better?

Playing lots of games seems like a great idea, thinking that you will get better just because you spend a lot of time on the game. Well that’s not really true. I played a very long time with little to no results. In order to get better I had to take conscious steps to improving my skills in certain departments. In order to avoid wasting your time you should:

  • Practice CS-ing. This is the bread and butter of the game. If you watch a stream of high elo players you will see they end with 300+ CS almost every game. That is because CS-ing is the primary income you have in LoL. You have money -> you have more items -> you are stronger -> you win the game.
  • Oh boy…This one is quite difficult. Where should I ward? Do I really need it? “I won’t get a Pink Ward because it’s going to be destroyed anyway”. You HAVE to ward to actually have a higher chance of winning. Warding won’t guarantee a win, but it will certainly increase the chances significantly. Make a rule of thumb to buy each game a pink ward no matter the role you’re playing. The vision it provides might last even 15 minutes or more. Definitely worth 100g. Although there are popular spots for wards, you can ward anywhere (not your own Fountain preferably) that gives you vision. If you’re paranoid about the pink getting destroyed, just use it in your own jungle to protect yourself from ganks. It also makes it easier to protect.
  • Dragon control. This is the most overlooked resource in Elo Hell by far. The dragon is a reusable resource that you can access every 7 minutes after it spawns for the first time. It’s currently the best comeback option in the game, mostly because jungle minions don’t grant bonus xp anymore and Baron…well Baron is tricky. Try getting dragon as many times as you can in the game and you will see an immediate increase in your winning chances. Sacrifice pink wards for vision; try smite steals if you are behind. If you succeed your death will not be in vain, and if you fail, well you were already behind anyway.
  • I found this guide online and it showed me what I have to build on my champion. Why am I not winning?

There are a lot of articles online about the way “League of Legends” is played. There are websites specifically tailored for strategic game play, the most popular being MOBAfire and solomid.net. Here you can access builds, strategies and a lot more if you are interested in finding out about the “meta” and not only. The problem is that people in Elo Hell don’t have a clue about what Magic Resistance is or what Armor Penetration can do for example. “What do you mean I have to build Hexdrinker vs Vlad as Renekton? But the build tells me to get Sunfire Cape as first item. ” Besides the obvious recommendation that you should read a bit about what MR and Armor Pen (and many more) are in case you don’t know, I would also tell you to stop following guides as you see them online. Those guides are general outlines of how your champion should look like in a perfect situation. There will be a lot of games where you will not get fed and you won’t have the money to buy Deathcap, Lichbane, Deathfire, Void Staff…Maybe you can buy an Abysall Scepter since you are behind and you need to also survive the enemy mage burst for example…It isn’t the best of situations, but you have to remember that this is a team game so even if you don’t carry someone else might do it and in the very end you want to see “Victory!” on the end screen.

  • I get feeders, afk, trolls in too many games. It’s impossible to escape Elo Hell.

That is hardly true. According to a study, you will win more games than you lose IF you are as good as you say you are. That means that you will inevitably reach a higher rank sooner or later if you stay consistent with your win-loss rate. What leads to poor game play is blaming things on team mates, but in the very end did you do everything in your power to win the game? Did you ward up, buy the right items, get dragon and have a decent CS by 20 mins? No? Then you can’t really expect to win with or without trolls. You will see that when you actually become better you will carry games 4v5 easy. Been there, done that.

  • /ff @ 20

You will encounter a lot of people who will spam the surrender option even when you are winning. Yes! There will be people who would rather give up if they died instead of fighting till the end. Don’t let their negative attitude put you down. Fight till the end. Even if you won’t win, you already spent time playing that game, so you should make the best of it and use the time to practice skill shots, cs-ing and maybe smite stealing.

  • “You’re such a noob! Go back to Wood 10!”

My final point in this article is flaming. Without going too deep into it let me tell you that this alone will lose you way more games than you actually should. People will perform much, much worse when being harassed. When you start flaming, you will have already lost half the battle. If someone else is starting an argument with you because you missed a shot or who knows what else, just try to diffuse the situation. If you find yourself not being able to reason with that person, then simply mute him. There is no reason for you to encourage that kind of behavior on yourself and on your team. People will be people and you will definitely have to deal with a lot of ragers. Don’t worry though. We’ve all been through it and we’re all getting better at becoming better players. So should you.

There are more things you can do to improve of course, but these basic rules will help you get a better grasp of the game. Focus each game on one step at a time. For example the most common gank in Soloq is by far the 3:30 top lane gank. If you’re playing top try warding right before that and if you’re a jungler try counterganking that.

Best of luck to you on the Rift!

Arena Adrian


Next article:

Raging, Tilting and other nerve wrecking issues – The “chill out it’s just a game” guide

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