First and foremost, you may be thinking, “Kana! Why are you posting Wednesday morning?” and the answer to that is simply: TERA Online beta this week! Yes, the closed beta to my Monster Hunter-surrogate begins Friday. So, I’ve decided to push back both posts, though honestly depending on how much footage I record Friday may mean the post is pushed back to Saturday morning. Hoping to get some solid gameplay with at least 2 classes this test cycle. Thinking Berserker and Archer, but if there is a class you’d rather see, by all means let me know! I’d be glad to get some footage about more of what people want. Now then, that out-of-the-way…

Today I wanted to cover something a little different from game mechanics. Going to go over a few of the basic mechanics of League of Legends and how you, the play, can interact with them to improve your game. Going to covering a decently wide range of topics so we won’t dive into too much detail, but if there are questions I can always expand on them later.

Zone Control:

First, watch that. Yes, the video is old, but it’s still every bit as accurate now as it ever was. Zoning has the effect of controlling your opponent through what are essentially mind games. What you want to do is bully the enemy lane (most effective if it’s 1 enemy in the lane, but it can be done against 2) until they have to retreat, then moving into position to prevent them from farming. Even better, if you can hold them well while only last hitting minions, your minions will only push very slowly. For every minion of yours that dies in the middle of the field, as opposed to the enemy tower, is another bit of experience you can deny, gaining more of an advantage. Some champions have insane innate zone control; Ziggs can completely lock out an enemy mid just by using Hexplosive Minefield, though the large radius will probably wind up pushing the minion wave bit by bit.

Last Hitting:

This is ‘light’ concept that is very, very helpful to remember. When you auto-attack farm, you run the risk of losing a minion kill (sometimes referred to as ‘creep score’, or cs for short) and all the gold you could have gotten from it. Just as bad, once you begin auto-attacking, your minions will easily win the fight and begin pushing, building up a wave that won’t stop until it’s reached the enemy tower for a while… which can put you in the perfect position for the enemy jungler to wreck your day. The concept of ‘last hitting’ is simple, just don’t touch the minion until it’s almost dead, then shoot it. Or stab/pummel/explode/slice/etc. This keeps the minion wave fro pushing too strongly in any one direction and keeps you from  over-extending.

Don’t be afraid to pop skills if your opponents are, it can be hard to last hit under a tower, just be careful in the location of the skills, to prevent too much pushing. Smack something a few times and watch the red number that pops up per hit, and remember it as how hard your auto-attack hits. Once the minion falls under that amount of hp, smack it! It can be somewhat difficult for casters to last hit because of their low damage, but there are some single-target or small AoE skills that can be used to great effect. Take ‘Lay Waste’ from Karthus, it’s his main damage spell, but used correctly will make last hitting a breeze.


BUY WARDS. You may think it’s not worth it (it is) or that it can be expensive (it can be), but trust me when I say it’s worth it. There have been games were I did utterly terrible and we still won. Why? I spent a large chunk of my income on Wards. Vision is one of the most important and most underrated benefits in League to date. Here, an example. I was playing duo’d with a friend, and I was playing a then-favorite of lane Udyr. I did absolutely garbage. I was 0/10/2 by about the 20 minute mark. Couldn’t live in team-fights, couldn’t win in a 1v1 fight. So what I do? I warded everything. You think that is an exaggeration, it’s not. Every time I went to base, I picked up at least five. I could grab up to 10 if we’d had a good team-fight. And all of our team-fights were good. They literally had no sight on us, while my obsessive ward spam had revealed their entire jungle and all of the river. If they stepped out of their base at all, we saw it. We could always get ganks or insane initiation just because they never knew where we were, or what we were doing. Even after the game, no one on our team was upset with my score. They knew the importance of vision, and how much gold I put into map awareness.

Now, that’s a bit of an extreme example, but a good show of how effective wards can be. No one is saying you can’t go back to base unless you can buy 7 wards at once or whatever, but it can be massively in your favor to pick up just one every time you go back to base. If you are bottom or top lane, throw it in the river. For the next 3 minutes, you’re basically immune to jungle ganks. You can see it coming and back off safely. Warding Dragon and Baron Nashor can keep enemies from getting those ad gaining an advantage over you. Even better, if you splurge a little and grab the more expensive pink ward you can see other invisible things. Like enemy wards. For about 50 gold more, not only do you grant yourself vision, but you deny your opponent’s sight.

Assisting Junglers:

Not really much I can add to what you’ve seen in there. A lot of times I see mid lane botch a pull by staying too long, costing me valuable time and eating up the healing from a potion since I’m now tanking more of it. Also the hilarious fail of top and mid underestimating their combined AoE, taking some of the wolves after I’ve hit ’em. Fairly simple stuff (outside taking golems), but doing it right will make your jungler happy and healthy, while doing it wrong will probably make them die a little inside. Or punch a lane for revenge.

And that’s that. There are a lot of other things you can do to better your game, but these are the most basic ways to get the biggest increase. I’d like to thank Stonewall and Shurelia for putting together great videos on the topics of Zone Control and Jungling Assistance. Keep everything in mind, and go pummel your enemies!