Please help me understand this game better.

#1 Posted by Nocall (353 posts) -

So I'm new at this. I did play DotA when it first came out, but I never really bothered to learn "how to play" -- I was content just running around and doing whatever felt like fun, no matter what my teammates said. But now I want to get better. Please answer these questions to help me out.
 
1) At the beginning, how do you know what lanes are good for which hero types? I got yelled at once for starting in the middle lane and I'm not sure why. 
 
2) How long are you expected to stay in that lane for? Is it "your lane" for the rest of the game?
 
3) How exactly does jungling work? When is an appropriate time to jungle and when should you not be in there?
 
And, on a more specific note, which heroes should I "give a try"?
This is how I play:
1) Ranged is boring. I prefer melee heroes.
2) Support classes and Tank classes are fun. Stealth/ganking classes are not.
3) I like to really be right up there in the heat of the battle, so heals are always welcome.
 
So far my favorite is Nunu. Who else should I look at?

#2 Posted by Giantstalker (1531 posts) -

Consider Mordekaiser, Garen, or Jarvan. They're tough heroes that have interesting abilities and can put out a fair bit of damage if they need to. None of them have heals, well I guess except for Mordekaiser's lifestealing ult, but there's a summoner power for that and both Mord/Garen often get very good life regeneration (it's a must for Mord).

Online
#3 Posted by GlenTennis (3144 posts) -

@Nocall:

These are all things that come with experience, but here are some general tips.

You usually want someone mid who is a ranged carry. The current metagame suggests it's usually a magic dealer. You also want to lane with someone who compliments you. So if you're tanky and close ranged, go with someone long ranged.

There is no strict definition of how long the laning phase lasts, but a good rule of thumb is around 15 minutes. If a tower falls and a bunch of people are fighting in other lanes, you should feel free to migrate.

Jungling is complicated. Usually there is one specified jungler and it is their job to just go through the jungle killing the neutral creeps and occasionally gank until they are properly built. For specific guides on how to jungle, it varies by character but there are some great guides out there.

Try Morde out and see if you like him. He's tricky, but look up a guide and see if you like it.

#4 Posted by Skiveron (2 posts) -

1)Middle lane is the "solo" lane, its 1 champion while bottom and top is 2 champions( later in level 30 you will usually have a jungler and the top lane will also be 1v1). Usually you want to keep at least 1 ranged in each lane but keep in mind there are people duo queuing and they might want to lane with their friend.
 
2) Depends on the circumstances and situation. You can stay in the lane for a while if you are intending to farm or push tower, you can roam away from your lane if you want to help other lanes by setting up ganks. However keep in mind that you lose xp every time you transition between lanes cause of no enemy mobs dying near you and may risk getting underleveled. 
 
3)Jungling is leveling up by killing the neutral mobs in your team's forest(and sometimes, enemy teams forest to deny their jungler xp). Each team has 1 dedicated jungler who takes the summoner spell smite to help them kill the mobs faster. The main advantage of jungling is that the jungler can gank other lanes easily since the enemy rarely has view of him, while if champions in other lanes try to gank observant players can call mia and put enemy players on corressponding lanes can go defensive. 
 
As for champions, its hard to recommend, I suggest you try all the champions that are free on the week until you find the one you like. There are alot of things to consider for example Yi and tryndamere are good in low levels but at high levels they usually get shut down.

#5 Edited by satansmagichat (187 posts) -

If you like melee champions, Master Yi, Renekton, and Nocturne are fun and easy, in my opinion.

Personally, I'm more of a tank/support person, so I can help more there. I really liked Cho'Gath when I first started, because his Ult let's him get a lot of health (plus getting a Warmog's Armor helps with that). He also physically gets bigger in size, which is fun. Aside from that, he has a short stun that pops people up and can silence, which seems kind of weak until you play against someone who can silence you (i.e., it's annoying as hell!)

But a tank is more about absorbing damage, it's also about crowd control. What I mean by that when both teams have one giant team fight, the tank needs to be the one sorting people out. Good teams know who to focus first and why, but the tank helps, usually with crowd stuns (Cho, Amumu, Alistar), silences (Cho), or taunts (Rammus, Shen). My favorite tank/support at the moment is Alistar. He has a heal that has a 10 second cooldown, but drops 2 seconds for every minion (or champ) that dies around you, so if you teamfight next to minions, you can basically spam that, healing your team constantly. He also has a great stun that knocks up any enemies around him and his ult makes him take even more damage than normal. He's a lot of fun.

Then there's Rammus, whose Taunt is one of the best disables in the game. He can take tons of damage, change enemy focus, and does lots of area of effect damage with his ult. He can also roll into a Sonic the Hedgehog ball and run away, which means he can stay to help the team and then get out once everyone's safe.

#6 Edited by valrog (3671 posts) -

Try out Mordekaiser, Malphite, Dr. Mundo, Alistar or Rammus. Or even Maokai. They are all tanky and should fit your playstyle. As for support, try out Sona.
 
1. This question is usually only important for middle lane. If you're not playing a ranged champion (Or someone that can be on your own if you don't have a mid champion) others will usually take that lane. If you have a jungler, top lane will be solo so again, if you don't play someone who could possibly hold 1v2, you should go to bottom lane. Also, since you're playing tanks mostly, it would be a good idea to get a laning partner that can deal a lot of damage (Master Yi, Caitlyn, etc.). With more games played, you will learn who goes well together and who does not.
 
2. That really depends. There's no law when you should leave your lane, but usually it will depend on what the enemy is doing as well as on towers. Once a tower falls in a lane, people usually don't stay in them like in the first 15 minutes or so. They start to wander into other lanes, trying to defend/kill towers. Either you do that, or the enemy does. Either way, it's a good sign for you to leave your lane and go help your teammates.
 
3. Junglers are champions who instead of being in the lane level up in the jungle killing neutral monsters. Usually they start at level 1 and stop when the team fights start or go to lane to help defend/push it. They also usually set up ganks (Ambushing enemies). Jungling is very important because it leaves one lane solo so the champion there can outlevel and outfarm enemies in that lane (If they don't have a jungler). It also provides greater map control because enemies usually don't know the jungler's whereabouts so they could get ganked at any moment. Especially if they don't buy wards. Also, some champions go to the jungle (Whether it's your own or your enemy's) just to get buffs (Like the Golem Buff). Usually that does not happen in the laning phase, but once the team fights start. Champions like these often require help because they're not really junglers (Veigar, Ryze, etc.) but they need the buff. And a lot of times an entire team will go and kill a Dragon (If you don't have anyone who can solo him, or it's too early) and Baron Nashor. Killing those two is important because it grants your gold and in Baron's case, buffs for entire team which gives you a great advantage.

#7 Posted by el_tajij (707 posts) -

@Nocall: There's a few things about starting League of Legends you should consider:

- First of all, from level 1-30, the games are sort of all a mess. You have level 30's creating a level 1 account just to 'stomp noobs' and you have a whole bunch of people of varying skill levels who don't know how to play. Use levels 1-30 to try as many champions as you can and find one which fits your playstyle. They really are all very different.

- The game is populated by mostly spoilt little kiddies (unfortunately) - generally take everything people say with a pinch of salt. You'll get insulted over and over again for doing nothing wrong. This is one of the reason why it's preferable to playing with teams of people you know.

- The most important thing to remember in games is that destroying towers wins games, not killing players. The first priority of always is to keep all the lanes pushed, all the time.

- I recommend learning to play without the summoner spell 'flash' - it's the crutch of too many bad players.

- If you like Nunu then you should look up some jungling guides and just practice jungling in custom games against bots until you feel comfortable with your circuit. I've played a lot of Jungle Nunu - it's great fun!

At the end of the day though, like @GlenTennis said - a lot of this just comes down to experience!

#8 Posted by valrog (3671 posts) -
@el_tajij: Isn't Flash unlocked at level 12 or so?
 
Also, play Co-op vs. AI games instead of Custom games. Bots there are smarter and you'll get IP (As well as First Win of the Day).
#9 Posted by Nocall (353 posts) -

I just wanted to thank everyone for all their help =) All suggestions/recommendations have been noted and will be looked into.

#10 Edited by Buscemi (1106 posts) -

You should really try an AD carry like Ashe, Miss Fortune or Caitlyn, because damn girl, those bitches get strong at the end there. Just make sure your farm is godlike and you don't die too much in early and mid game.

#11 Edited by FirePrince (1763 posts) -
#12 Posted by el_tajij (707 posts) -

@valrog: It doesn't take long to hit level 12. But flash really is a waste of a summoner spell and it promotes bad habits. So often i'll be in a solo queue match with 9 other people who've taken flash. It stops people thinking about zoning because players just think 'hey its ok to overextend, i can just flash out of here' - when really, zone control is what your constantly thinking about and what wins you games. However, there are a few champs it's useful for like Janna (as you can flash + monsoon to break up enemy groups).

Learn to run teleport on your champ instead of flash - teleport allows you to be where you need to be at the right moment and allows you to control all the lanes and keep them pushed. It's wise to have at least one player on your team with teleport.

#13 Posted by valrog (3671 posts) -
@el_tajij: I take Ghost over Flash most of the time. But yeah, Teleport is a good spell as well.
#14 Posted by Azteck (7449 posts) -
@valrog said:
@el_tajij: I take Ghost over Flash most of the time. But yeah, Teleport is a good spell as well.
How come? I've never felt that Ghost was better as flash lets me get out of slows by possibly porting over walls and such, whereas I'll still be slowed with ghost and they will most likely still kill me. Flash also lets me surprise gank if someone's low and hiding behind a tower.
#15 Posted by valrog (3671 posts) -
@Azteck said:
@valrog said:
@el_tajij: I take Ghost over Flash most of the time. But yeah, Teleport is a good spell as well.
How come? I've never felt that Ghost was better as flash lets me get out of slows by possibly porting over walls and such, whereas I'll still be slowed with ghost and they will most likely still kill me. Flash also lets me surprise gank if someone's low and hiding behind a tower.
I don't know, Ghost saved my life a lot of times. They usually still caught up to me when I flashed (When I can't use walls to my advantage), but I guess it all depends on the situation, really. But for chasing I do prefer Ghost unless they manage to port through walls or something like that.
#16 Posted by Hunkulese (2642 posts) -

@Nocall: Taric sounds like the exact champion you're looking for.

#17 Posted by CharlieTuna (328 posts) -
@Nocall said:
1) At the beginning, how do you know what lanes are good for which hero types? I got yelled at once for starting in the middle lane and I'm not sure why.   2) How long are you expected to stay in that lane for? Is it "your lane" for the rest of the game?  3) How exactly does jungling work? When is an appropriate time to jungle and when should you not be in there?  And, on a more specific note, which heroes should I "give a try"? This is how I play: 1) Ranged is boring. I prefer melee heroes. 2) Support classes and Tank classes are fun. Stealth/ganking classes are not. 3) I like to really be right up there in the heat of the battle, so heals are always welcome.  So far my favorite is Nunu. Who else should I look at?
1) Usually it a mage/AP carry in mid and its usually a good idea, they do need the levels (solo xp is higher than dual lane xp as you may know). At your level the other lanes may not matter much what the other lanes are, I'm guessing that you may see all kinds of weird shit. 
 
2) If you are in danger of getting killed, it might just be better to go back, consider the fact that you buying after going back makes you slightly stronger until they do but maybe a bit behind in level (not much if duo though, it's fine). Remember to buy healthpots (2 or 3 even) so you can stay in lane and farm longer. Or if you finish a big item like lets say a Infinity Edge on a AD carry. You'll get a feel for it sooner or later. 
 
3) Unless you are level 30 I would recommend that you ignore jungling, its hard without runes and usually at lower levels the dude going 2 v 1 in a lane will just end up feeding. Jungling can have a thread on it's own pretty much. 
 
Like others have said Taric is the man for you, Udyr is unique and weird also, might wanna give him a try. Don't play morde, the less people playing morde the better.
#18 Posted by Giantstalker (1531 posts) -

I'm going to chime in and say that Taric, although good in many other ways, has a hard time killing champions on his own. Take that for what you will.

Garen doesn't need mana, he's quite tough, and can dish out a surprising amount of punishment (he tapers off a bit later in the game though). It's pretty easy to dive into towers at level 6 and just wreck people who need to heal, which is great. He requires less skill to play well than most other champions, in my opinion anyway, which makes him better for less experienced players. Not saying he's worse, I actually play him quite frequently (he's rarely banned in ranked matches), and he's quite fun regardless.

Online
#19 Posted by artgarcrunkle (970 posts) -
@Nocall: You won't get better playing bots, so beyond learning the mechanics of a specific champ bots are kind of a waste of time. Udyr is op and can do all sorts of things very well, so you should look into him, but really you just need to play lots of champs and figure the game out.
#20 Posted by satansmagichat (187 posts) -

@Giantstalker said:

I'm going to chime in and say that Taric, although good in many other ways, has a hard time killing champions on his own. Take that for what you will.

That's why he's support/tank. Although, look at preview vid for this next patch and Taric (along with other supports) will be able to hold his own.

#21 Posted by Kidavenger (3509 posts) -

@Nocall:

Middle lane is normally ranged, experienced players. You level faster in the middle lane because you aren't sharing experience or gold from creep kills with another player, but you are also at higher risk of being ganked from either top or bottom lane so you need to be constantly aware of what is going on around you and never be out of position. Middle lane is also the shortest path between the two teams, if your middle lane fails, it puts your team in a much worst situation than either of the others.

You want to stay in your lane until your creeps are able to hold the lane on their own, this usually happens once you take down the first tower in your lane, once you've done this assess the situation, if one of the other lanes is having a hard time, go help them; if you are doing really well, keep pushing. Whatever you do, you need to at least monitor your lane for the rest of the game to make sure the other team doesn't try to make a push on it.

Jungling is done to maximize the experience and gold your team is getting because your are now killing all the creep waves plus all the creep spawns in the jungle, if the other team has a jungler and you team doesn't you will have a growing disadvantage as the game goes on as the other team will level faster than yours unless you are able to get more player kills (usually not the case). If you are jungling, make sure to pay attention to the lanes, part of your job is ganking the other team when they are out of position and filling in on lanes when people go back or die.

I play Rammus, I think he is the most straight forward tank, taunt and shield with some nice mobility and a powerful aoe.

#22 Posted by amomjc (977 posts) -

@Nocall said:

So I'm new at this. I did play DotA when it first came out, but I never really bothered to learn "how to play" -- I was content just running around and doing whatever felt like fun, no matter what my teammates said. But now I want to get better. Please answer these questions to help me out. 1) At the beginning, how do you know what lanes are good for which hero types? I got yelled at once for starting in the middle lane and I'm not sure why. 2) How long are you expected to stay in that lane for? Is it "your lane" for the rest of the game? 3) How exactly does jungling work? When is an appropriate time to jungle and when should you not be in there? And, on a more specific note, which heroes should I "give a try"? This is how I play: 1) Ranged is boring. I prefer melee heroes. 2) Support classes and Tank classes are fun. Stealth/ganking classes are not. 3) I like to really be right up there in the heat of the battle, so heals are always welcome. So far my favorite is Nunu. Who else should I look at?

1) When you begin, there are characters that are known as "solo" or "carries." Before touching a champion I recommend heading over to mobafire.com and learning a bit about the champion your trying to play. This game is a lot more complex then people give it where builds, ability order, and etc are all taken seriously. Examples of Solo-laners are Annie, Jax, Caitlyn, Kog'maw, etc.

2) Your really expected to stay in your lane until around the time everyone is L12+. This is due to just leveling and gold farming with a little harassment mixed in to keep the lanes moving back and forth. If your not comfortable initiating a team push (when all team members join the same lane and push forward) then just wait until you see everyone congregating and follow. There are, however, several assassin heroes that like to play around in the NPC jungle, and jump around from lane to lane to do a little 3v1 or 3v2 to get a quick kill.

3) Jungling is based on your champion you chose. There are some chars that stay in the jungle instead of laning to level up. Shaco is one and Warwick is another. Again, I would head onto mobafire.com to really get a grasp on your character. They will have guides for every champion that really detail what to do when and where.

  • Great Melee Classes: Katarina, Yi, Poppy, Kenne, Pantheon. Support and tank I would recommend Taric, Janna, Malphite (with correct build), or maybe Mundo.
  • Since you said you "love to be up in the heat of battle" be very careful. One of the worst mistakes you could make is what is called "feeding" where you become too greedy or lack the skills to play and get yourself killed a lot. The beginning of the game is all about harassment and taking advantage of opportunities. Get used to just running in to get a quick hit and running away, avoiding a 2v1 battle.

Again, even though I have been able to give you a little bit of the knowledge i've gained, I have been play for over 700+ matches and throughout those made stupid mistakes and had my fair share of crappy matches. Just get used to a couple of heroes, read their guides at the site I mentioned, and really get serious about every move you make.

mobafire.com

#23 Posted by DonPixel (2585 posts) -

@Nocall: www.mobafire.com

#24 Edited by el_tajij (707 posts) -

Also, one more piece of advice. You won't get better playing the same champ over and over, you'll see more improvement by playing every champ you can get your hands on. You gotta know your enemy to beat your enemy. League of legends is all about when to push and when to pull back. If you have a grasp of all the champions, you'll be able to make that decision effortlessly.

Edit: What i mean is, try not to worry too hard specialising in one character - learn how everyone works. You'll know who can beat who and when. You'll know when to fight and when to run. It takes time, but thats a tip not many summoners follow.

#25 Posted by Cr0ssbow (101 posts) -

@el_tajij said:

Also, one more piece of advice. You won't get better playing the same champ over and over, you'll see more improvement by playing every champ you can get your hands on. You gotta know your enemy to beat your enemy. League of legends is all about when to push and when to pull back. If you have a grasp of all the champions, you'll be able to make that decision effortlessly.

Edit: What i mean is, try not to worry too hard specialising in one character - learn how everyone works. You'll know who can beat who and when. You'll know when to fight and when to run. It takes time, but thats a tip not many summoners follow.

el_tajij speaks the truth here. You'll be surprised just how often you'll be playing certain champs and realize just how much they inform other ones. Many times I'll be playing one champ and reach an epiphany while playing and be like "Wait, what was I thinking stacking W on <insert Champion here>!" One thing I would stress however is don't go TOO crazy about changing up which champs you play. I like LoL's weekly rotation, so I stuck with it and played one champ a week, then at the end of the week, I would buy that champ and add him to my arsenal. So far, the only one I ended up not picking up was Sivir. Poor Sivir. Ashe is just so much better in nearly every respect. =(

All the advice that's been given here has been good. I am leery of recommending you check out guides on websites though, but that just may be me. As often as this game gets patch'd and champs get altered, I'd rather trust my own judgement and experience in terms of builds and ability ordering.

#26 Posted by Wuddel (2079 posts) -

Quick question from a beginner: Is there a way to set item favourites? I do not want to take the recommended.

#27 Posted by GNCD (17 posts) -

Try Cho'Gath. The first champ that I bought and he didn't disappoint. Build him pure tank and he is almost unkillable. I build him up AP/Tank hybrid to contribute to the damage output. It will also make you a threat which is good since you are tank. His laning is also decent if you play him right.

#28 Posted by redbliss (647 posts) -

@Nocall: It looks like people already answered your questions, but keep in mind that this game is going to take some practice. LoL does a good job of grouping you with people at or around your same skill level, so you should always have good competition. It takes a while to figure things out, but the more you play the more things start to make sense (like who should mid, when the laning phase is over, etc.).

As for suggestions on the best characters to start with, I would say try to use Sona if you are into support. She is a pretty easy champion to use so long as you use her as support, and her moves can be pretty powerful once you raise her AP. I would not, however, recommend AP characters to beginners, and instead suggest you start with attack damage (AD) characters. I think it is easier to build AD, especially because you dont know what all the stat stuff means on the items. Once you start picking up which items are good for which builds then I would say you are ready to use AP characters. At least this is what I did because I came into LoL with no experience in MOBA games, and for the most part I have a better understanding of LoL now than I did when I began.

So to start I would say get good with an easy AD character like Master Yi or Warwick, and if you wanted to go support use Sona and if you wanted to go tank use Mundo. When building Mundo just go with defensive items like health and armor, and dont worry about picking up AP for now. It is also worth noting that when you are beginning keep your builds very simple -- just buy items with one or two stat modifiers. Once you get more experience you will learn what items you can dump and which ones you should buy instead.

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