F**k Team Fights: Importance of Ambushes and Objective Grabbing

Posted: October 12, 2011 by atenthirtyone in General

League of Legends is a lot about killing enemy champions. It gives you gold, experience, the satisfaction of causing virtual harm to another person, and potentially rage/whine replies. The average League of Legends match ends after or at least shortly after a full team fight. One team tends to come out ahead after the brawl and is either able to outright win or secure an advantage to win shortly. A lot of the game balance is geared towards this idea of team fighting. From champions that poke to weaken enemies, assassins that pick off key targets, support champions that save allies, and tanks that control the pace of the battle – it seems like League of Legends has a lot of focus towards team fights. But what if we ignore this to win?

Think about it, what is the winning conditions in a League of Legends match (Summoner’s Rift)? Either the enemy team loses their nexus, or they agree to a surrender vote because they think they will lose the nexus first. The only reason that team fights occur is because the opposite team usually does not sit there while you destroy their towers and nexus. Team fights are a collective effort to reduce the enemy’s ability to defend/attack structures. However, team fights have various factors that impact the outcome such as: relative champion strength, team composition, player skill, jungle buffs, terrain, etc. Sometimes, one team can technically have a measurable advantage in items and levels, but still lose due to poor fight initiation or team composition. At the same time, a team can have the most ideal composition and initiation, but lose to weaker player skill or teamwork. These are factors that typically are pretty hard to know well unless you are on a professional team that you practice with regularly and know/trust your teammates’ skills and abilities. If you are, I have no idea why you are reading this. Anyway, what if we could win a match without having to worry about all these factors? No one said you have to win through team fights all the time.

So great, we do not want to team fight, but we still want to reduce the enemy team’s ability to defend/attack. Why not if the enemy team does not have a full team of five members to fight your team? Obviously, you cannot ask an enemy player to step aside from the map, but you can do something else – gank. Now, I mean ganking an enemy player as a group so your success rate would be pretty high. If your team manages to kill off the enemy team’s AD carry, then they would be less likely to want to fight you in a team battle. This would give your team a bit of control on the map, allowing you to get an extra tower in a lane. Obviously, sometimes this may or may not work due to enemy players not overextending or staying grouped up. However, you should never give up the opportunity for a relatively easy and safe way to give your team a huge advantage. Oh, just beware of baits.

This next idea is a bit of a team fight, kinda. As everyone knows in the middle of the upper river, there is a neutral creep by the name of Baron. He tends to require a group effort, but rewards handsomely with global team gold, and better yet a monstrously buff. This buff allows your team to play more aggressive because your entire team (hopefully at the time of Baron’s demise) gains quite a bit of damage and regeneration. In fact, it’s not an unwise decision to go for a Baron attempt once your team secures map control through outer turret kills and ward placements.

Finally, what if we just completely ignore the enemy team and just go f**king kill their towers/nexus? Split pushing and backdooring are very vital tactics. The effectiveness of these tactics tend to vary depending on relative champion strengths (items and level) and selection. However, if you happen to have a very mobile champion such as Teemo or Nidalee or a strong 1v1 duelist champion then way not? As long your team can defend a 4v5 at a tower or chokepoint, then there is no harm. With a mobile champion, then enemy team will only waste time trying to kill the split pusher. Against a duelist champion (Overfed/farmed champions or those that naturally are great are dueling such as Udyr or Tryndamere), they cannot just send one champion since they will probably lose. This forces a few responses from the enemy team:

1. Send one player to stop the split pusher – Against a mobile champion, this is generally a waste of time since they will just run away to another lane. Against a duelist champion, it’s hoping you win the duel.

2. Send multiple players to stop the split pusher – You can probably stop the push, but this means you will become weaker against a fight or push from the four remaining players that now form their own push.

3. Send no one – This usually means either go for baron, a team fight, or a straight push. This can work, but there is a chance that the split pusher will cause more damage than your team since he is pushing uncontested, while you still need to fight his/her four remaining teammates.

Of course, all of these tactics are not fool proof nor are they magical ways to win a match all of the time. Sometimes, your team simply does not have anyone that can split push or is able to take baron. Other times, you are focused to engage in a full 5v5 team fight. However, the point of this article is to open the idea that fighting straight up is not the only way to win a League of Legends match. Try to remember that the objective is killing structures and take advantage of your team’s composition and your enemy team’s mistakes.

Oh, I apologize for a late article as I been quite busy with work and school. I also am feeling a bit of a burnout from League of Legends. I will be taking a short sabbatical (is this used correctly for this context) from writing on lolnoelo as I am unable to play nor think about League of Legends enough lately. Anyway, post your comments if you can.

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