In League of Legends, sharp and quick decision-making is key to victory. This guide is crafted for players in all roles ready to improve their gameplay.
Each role, from the solitary Top Lane to the vigilant Support, has a unique set of strategic choices that can swing the game result.
We're going to unpack these choices, role by role, and show you how they can lead your team to an easy win.
Top Lane is where you're often on your own, and every decision counts. Outmaneuvering your opponent is only part of playing Top Lane. Equally important is gauging the perfect moments to advance your lane and target turrets or deciding when to leave your post to support your teammates.
Lane control and wave management are good starting points. You've got to keep the minions where you want them. If you push too far without vision, you're an easy target for the enemy jungler. Learn to 'freeze' the lane near your turret to make it risky for your opponent to farm.
Know when to go in for a trade or an all-out fight. This isn't just about who has the longer health bar; it's about understanding your champion's power spikes compared to your opponent's, managing cooldowns, and even baiting the enemy into making a mistake.
Map awareness is crucial because you aren't as isolated as you might think. Keep an eye on the map for opportunities to teleport into team fights or to snatch objectives. Being aware of the enemy jungler's position is also key. If they're on the other side of the map, you might have a chance to push hard or even take a solo kill.
Roaming can sometimes be the best move. If your team is gearing up for a fight over Dragon or needs help mid, be ready to move. It's about timing – don't roam when you'll lose a lot of farm or a turret unless you're sure you can make a significant impact elsewhere.
Split pushing vs team fighting is a classic Top Lane decision. Are you playing a champion that can demolish turrets quickly? Then split-pushing might be your way to victory. But if you're on a champ that excels in team fights, joining your allies can be the better choice. It's all about playing to your champion's strengths.
As the team's jungler, you're the chess player in a game of checkers. You can tip the scales in any lane, turning a fair fight into a sudden ambush or a pressured lane into a safe haven.
Farming vs ganking is a decision you need to make throughout the game constantly. Your primary choice is whether to secure your strength through farming or to bolster your lanes through ganks. Efficient farming gives your levels and gold, but a well-placed gank can cripple the enemy and accelerate your teammates' power. It's a balance; too much farming and your lanes might get overrun; too much ganking and you could fall behind.
So, optimal jungle pathing is the balance you should find between farming and ganking. Your route through the jungle is more than just a journey from one camp to another; it's a strategic plan. You want to be efficient, yes, but you also want to be unpredictable. Change up your routes, remain unseen, and strike whenever the enemy least expects it.
As a jungler, you're also the guardian of vision. Placing wards in the enemy jungle not only keeps you safe from counter-jungling but also gives your team vital information on enemy movements. Denying the enemy vision as Jungle with control wards and sweepers adds another layer of dominance, cloaking your actions in mystery.
The most important objectives in the Rift – the dragons, Herald, and Baron – are under your watch. Securing these objectives requires more than a strong smite. It demands the foresight to see when the enemy is vulnerable and the decisiveness to rally your team for a speedy takedown.
Every game calls for a different kind of jungler. Sometimes you're the tank, front and center in team fights. Other times, you're the assassin waiting for that one perfect strike. Read the game, know what your team needs, and adapt your playstyle accordingly.
Your perspective of the game is unique, and sharing this view with your team can be game-changing. Let your laners know where the enemy jungler might be, ping when you're ready for an objective, and call out potential danger. A jungler who communicates well is a force multiplier.
Always keep an eye on the minimap and toggle to teammates. Knowing where everyone is and predicting where they'll go next allows you to be proactive rather than reactive. If the enemy jungler shows up top, you have options: counter gank if you're nearby, counter jungle, secure a dragon, or gank bot if you're far away. It's these decisions that define a great jungler.
Mid Laners sit at the crossroads of the map, a position that comes with great power and responsibility. Your job isn't just to win your lane; it's to be the pivot point that can roam and gain advantages across the board.
It all starts with asserting dominance over your lane opponent. This means farming efficiently, trading effectively, and never missing a chance to land damage or a critical spell. If you can keep the enemy mid laner under their tower, you're winning your lane and setting yourself up to help elsewhere.
It's your chance to roam when your opponent is pinned down, or the waves are shoved. But you have to know when to leave your lane and when to stay. If you roam at the wrong time, you could lose minions to your tower, or worse, give up your tower entirely. The key is to push the lane and then move swiftly to assist your teammates, making a play for a kill, a tower, or a dragon.
Good mid laners have their eyes glued to the minimap and understand where everyone is. If you see the enemy jungler showing bot lane, it might be time to push hard or help your top laner. If you see the enemy mid laner roaming, you must decide quickly: follow them or push the lane and make them pay for leaving.
With your central position, you have access to both sides of the jungle. By placing wards and controlling these areas, you can secure vision for your team and spot enemy movements. It also helps your jungler to invade safely or protect your side of the map.
Each enemy mid laner is different. Some will try to push you back to your tower, others will roam, and some will wait for their jungler to gank. You need to read their playstyle and adapt. Can you out-push them? Can you follow their roams? Can you call for your jungler to counter-gank? Your flexibility and quick thinking in these moments define the caliber of mid laner you are.
Your success revolves around scaling, snowballing, and positioning. Get these right, and you'll blast through enemies; get them wrong, and you're off to respawn city before you know it.
The early game is all about survival and scaling up. Farming is your number one priority, so perfect those last hits. But it's not just about farming passively. You need to keep an eye on the enemy laners' movements. Are they aggressive, or are they playing it safe? That will determine whether you can go for that extra CS or not.
Positioning is what being an ADC is about. Stay at the back lines in team fights, skirting the edges where you can land your shots without getting caught out. You want to be close enough to deal damage but far enough to avoid enemy attacks. Every movement counts in teamfights.
Not every enemy is your target. It's tempting to go for the kill, but sometimes, it's better to hit whoever you can without putting yourself in danger. You're the sustained damage dealer, so keep hitting and stay alive; your team should take care of the rest.
Know when to engage. Your team relies on you to dish out damage, but you can't just jump into the fray. Watch for enemy cooldowns: did that assassin just ult? Is the enemy tank distracted? That's your cue to do damage.
Kiting is your defense. It's your way of saying, "You can't catch me," while you chip away at their health. Learn to attack, move back, and repeat. It keeps you mobile and hard to pin down.
ADCs can take down objectives faster than any other role. So after a successful fight, turn your attention to towers, dragons, and barons. These objectives are stepping stones to victory, and as an ADC, you're the one who can secure them quickly.
As a Support, you're the team's backbone, often making or breaking the game's outcome with your strategic insights and timely interventions. While you might not grab the spotlight with flashy solo kills, your role is pivotal in creating a vision, securing kills, and safeguarding your teammates.
Vision is power. It's your job to light up key areas of the map. Instead of dropping wards randomly, think about what objectives are coming up, where the enemy jungler might be, and where you need to see to keep your ADC safe. Good warding can prevent ganks, secure objectives, and even catch an out-of-position enemy.
Roam at the right time and avoid risking your ADC's advantages. You're the playmaker, which means you need to read the game and set up the plays that will lead to victory. That could be a well-timed hook, a stun that disengages the enemy and saves a teammate. You create opportunities for your team to shine.
Peeling and protecting is part of your job. Your ADC is your priority, but in team fights, you'll need to make split-second decisions on whom to protect. Sometimes, it's your ADC; other times, it might be your mid laner who's strong and capable of dealing serious damage. Use your abilities to peel threats away from your main damage dealers.
You've got a broad view of the game, and with that comes the responsibility to communicate. Whether it's pinging that the enemy jungler is doing their buffs or organizing the team for a dragon fight, your voice can be the guiding force for your team's strategy.
Every game is different, and so is every lane matchup. You might need to be aggressive in one game, zoning the enemy off the farm, or defensive in another, keeping your carry safe against a stronger lane. Being able to adapt your playstyle and item build is crucial for a support.
Sometimes, you'll need to be the hero who makes the ultimate sacrifice. Diving into the enemy to secure a free kill for your carry or to stop them from taking a vital objective might mean your demise, but if it leads to your team winning, it's worth it.
Becoming better at decision-making in-game is about practicing smart. Here are some ways to sharpen this crucial skill set:
Reflect on Your Play: After each game, take a moment to think about key decisions you made. Could you have roamed earlier? Was there a better target in that team fight? Reflecting on these moments can turn good instincts into second nature.
Review Your Games: Watch replays of your matches, especially those where you felt stuck. Identify moments where a different choice could have led to a better outcome. That helps you see the bigger picture and understand the impact of your decisions.
Set In-Game Goals: Instead of just playing to win, set specific objectives for yourself in each game. It could be improving your CS count, warding specific map areas, or not dying from ganks. These mini-goals keep your decision-making focused.
Coaching Sessions: If you're serious about improving, consider investing in coaching. A good coach can offer personalized advice and point out everything related to the decision-making topic, and much more. Remember, LoL coaching is for both beginners and pro players.
Play with Better Players: Playing with a pro or against veterans is one of the quickest ways to improve. You'll learn from their live decision-making, and be forced to make quicker, smarter decisions to keep up.
Drills for Skills: There are drills for almost every aspect of League of Legends. For decision-making, try custom games where you practice map awareness, like checking the minimap after every minion kill, or reaction drills where a friend calls out commands you must follow.
Learn from the Best: Watch streams and videos from top players who play your role. Listen to their commentary, why they make certain decisions, and how they adapt to different situations. Then, try to apply that thinking in your games.
Stay Informed: Keep up-to-date with the latest patches, champion adjustments, and meta changes. Being informed helps you make decisions based on the current state of the game, which can be very different from last season or even last week.