Intro Guide to Ranked Teams
Welcome to a beginner’s guide to ranked teams for League of Legends. Now a good bit of this guide will be opinionated because it is based on my own experience. The guide itself will be super basic. The general idea of this guide is just to help get started and help them get the ranked team ward or to get gold. The teams ladder early on is not super intense but I would like to go into more complexities in a different variations as time goes on. For now if you already have a understanding of ranked teams then this guide will not help you currently.
Here is some proof for those who might want it.
Finding Players and Mentality
Finding players is not that hard because there are Reddit subs and/or League of Legends boards created for the purpose of ranked teams. Personally I prefer to play fives with friends as there is less pressure and people get less offended when their friends calls them out on something compared to a bunch of random people who might get defensive. One thing to take note is the first lost is pretty big for a bunch of random players because it shows how people will react and most of the time make or breaks a team because people get frustrated and they’ll want to blame someone or something so it becomes important to keep a leveled head. I’ve only had one case of someone being extremely toxic to the point that I thought toxic waste was going to start pouring on me ad burn away all my skin but all you have to do is remove them from the team and find someone else.
I know it seems fairly obvious but some people just need to be told this multiple times. You have to keep your mind open and communicate in ranked teams. Everyone is going to make mistakes including yourself so you don’t want to start being an ass by yelling at someone but it is also important when mistakes do get brought up that you don’t get overly defensive. When you do want to bring something up just be leveled headed about it. It’s a team and you got to work together but some people just want to that star player.
Now most teams have some type of communication in ranked teams but it usually just basic communication from my experience. I do think it is really helpful to have a type of shot calling system for a team because having everyone on the same page makes life easier. The shot caller should be someone who is not afraid to just make a split second decision. The system will vary based on how everyone wants the team to work. Groups of friends playing will probably have an easier time finding a shot caller compared to a bunch of random people because there is some established trust. There are really three main systems of shot each with their own positives and negatives.
One Shot Caller: You will more than likely not run into anyone running this system as it requires a lot of experience/knowledge to pull it off. What you want to do with this is have everyone just give the shot caller information so he can decide what to do. The obvious positive of this is that you have the one decisive voice you can follow and you won’t have split decision making. The negatives are potential bad calls which are bound to happen and if the shot caller tilts it can hard to figure out what to do.
Two Shot Callers: This is the system we use where I, iAero31, and sometimes Do Not Towerdive just make a call for an objective or fight with information from everyone. iAero31 is out jungler so he makes the decisions about ganks during lane phase. Then in team fights it only falls to one person. I would probably the one person it falls to for the 100 percent most quality reason of I am the person that shouts the loudest. I basically decided that I am similar Chauster because I am always right so I must shot my commands in fights. Though I doubt my friends appreciate my shouting it does work out quite well like we won some games. There will be times where shot calling may get split but it will buffer out as you play more with each other.
Chaos: This one where everyone just calls something and there is no order at all. This will probably be the most common for lower elo teams. We have tried this and it did not go well we kept having split decisions which caused a lot of loses and poor team play. Personally I think you are better off just trying to get some type of defined shot calling instead of everyone just doing their own thing.
Once you have your team created you want find out what everyone can and wants to play and try to make a team composition around it. In low elo ranked teams simple team compositions are your friend because they are easy to execute and do not require too much coordination compared to more complex compositions. These simple compositions tend me be all about team fighting because low elo teams just seem to turn into dragon fight central. The pattern you are going to see with these team compositions is that there is a lot of engage power to start fights and decent amounts of wave clear and push power to siege.
These two team compositions are both fairly simple and easy to execute. I’ll start with the game 1’s Sivir composition. The composition itself is really one dimensional we have some wiggle room with having Jax split push but we mostly just want to team and get dragons. Then with the dragons stacked we can look to dive towers and end the game with large amounts of upfront damage. It pretty much the equivalent of face hunter where you run at them and just keep going face until you win. No one will respect for this composition but it does work and let’s be honest who respects a Sivir composition. Then game two’s composition is stills simple but it is more of a control team fight. It is all about having a front line so big that the two carry champions are safe to just attack the enemy front line or whoever is caught. The composition is a little bit less about dragons but we have really strong siege with Tristana and the front line. Having more than one carry threat is helpful because if someone loses lane you have another person to try and pick up the slack but this is also something that will change from team to team. I’ll end this on the note of always have your top laner take teleport so he can show up to fights because we have seen teams that run ignite top and just can’t handle the pressure of teleport.
Now notice the enemy teams don’t have much synergy in their teams at all but they are all individually strong. The most common thing we see is these snowball team compositions where they have to get out of control or they lose. Even when they snowball if they make one mistake and lose a fight it can easily swing. Game 1 they have no front line in their team everyone went damage to try and snowball so we ran through them like a train versus and a bunch of cardboard boxes. I will say they did have wave clear in game one unlike some other teams we faced. Game 2 is the same thing a bunch of individual champions that don’t synergize. The enemy team was winning for a little bit but they couldn’t siege because we had clear and they had no front line to protect Kalista so she could auto attack our towers. They eventually got to force full and we got a team fight that we won and they just flat out lost the game after a bad team fight. A case can be made that snowball compositions can work and they do to some degree but they are also unreliable because they lack any type of clear to stop sieges and require everyone to win lane.
As you get better and higher up branching into new team compositions is good. This is one of our more recent split and pick compositions that has our fastest game time which is honestly do to the awful draft of the other team. I wanted to just bring this up because more complex compositions are more rewarding and can end games faster or make game easier to win when executed correctly. Once your team gets better with working with each other you can look to go into more complex compositions.
Now I can’t go super detail about warding because every game is different but I can give general maps on where to ward in certain scenarios and invades. Everyone on the team should be trying to buy some type of vision for the team. The marksman is a bit of a exception but they can go for a pink. I would saying getting upgraded trinkets to Greater Totem and Oracle's Lens around 10 to 15 minutes is reasonable and we have sight stone on our jungler to help keep large amounts of vision on the map. The large amounts of vision just give so much control that it is really worth the investment to keep everyone safe and to keep vision on the enemy.
Level 1 Wards
Each color goes with its corresponding side and those with both colors are good for either side. This level 1 ward map is pretty standard it is really defensive set up. It allows for the players to stand in brushes away from jungle entrances to avoid deaths in potential invades. If you want you can also stack the brush by a buff to fight against a invade as well.
So the one on the left is if you are invading as the blue team and the one on the right is for the red team. Invading should be done with five people and at least placing a ward on your buff to make sure you see if they counter invade. In teams invading can be super strong as taking away enemy summoner spells or getting some kills can translate into a lane advantage and really help you get ahead. Invading can be dangerous if the enemy team stacks a brush so make sure you aren’t too clumped but close enough to collapse on a pick. Generally you want the person who going to be using their crowd control first leading the way so they can hit whoever comes into vision immediately. When you’re invading feel free to drop wards in the jungle to see if you can get some extra vision of the enemy jungler’s movements.
Dragon and Baron Wards
Green circles are for sight wards and pink circles are for vision wards and those with both colors are interchangeable. The idea for these wards is that you clear out all vision in the river so the enemy team can’t see you and you use your team's green wards to see them. This way you can move through the river and get the jump on them while they are still trying to find your team. These ward placements can be hard to defend or set up depending on the situation but if you can get their first and aren’t behind you can usually hold vision control.
Communication in Game
Shockingly enough it is important to keep communication up while you are playing in teams. The most basic things you want to tell your team is ward placements, summoner spells, and movements of enemy champions. Each of these basic communication help in their own way like calling out wards helps you team navigate outside the enemies view, calling summoner spells can help in skirmish or team fight scenarios, and calling enemy movements tells which lanes have to be on guard. Once you get out of lane phase you can focus on communication about creep waves, dragon, baron, and towers. When you start setting up for objectives you should also start talking about possible wards and where you want your vision to set up that fog of war against the enemy team. Another rule of thumb if it seems relevant there is a good chance it is relevant like if a champion’s ultimate is still down while you are looking for a fight that can serve as an indicator to start a fight. It does to a bit to figure out whats relevant and when it is relevant but getting experience fixes that issue.
After Game & Practice
I mention earlier that the first lose can make or break a team. If your team hasn’t gotten super salty it’s can be a good idea to go over the game a little bit about key moments that went well or poorly and if everyone is on edge it can just wait till later. Fixing your team’s problems and growing helps you win more and climb the ladder however not everything can be fixed immediately after a game so you want to either queue up and practice together or just solo and work on what you think needs to be depending on what you are practicing. Practicing can be fun like recently we held Do Not Towerdive hostage and made him play Kog’Maw in a Juggermaw composition. Usually you want to practice in normals so you can focus on yourself and what you want to improve at. Another way of practicing outside of playing is to watch replays but this is more of a acquired taste. The idea of watching replays is to pick up what you did wrong and what you could have done differently. It is a much longer process so not many people care to do it.
I want to use this space to address things but didn't want to use a paragraph for them.
Q: Why isn’t their more define explanations of compositions?
I thought about it and it is something I want to do. The main reason I didn’t is that every team is probably going to be different so breaking down a composition most might not use seemed questionable. The compositions we used anyway are super simple that you pick up on the general idea just by looking at out picks. I would like to break down rank team compositions but at a later time when I have video to match the article.
Q: How big a difference does elo make?
It does help because higher elo tend to have more game knowledge but it is not everything. We have played against master tier and challenger players before but a lot of watch multiple pro scenes so we tend to get by through knowledge. They will beat you in lane but as long as you can keep yourself close or find different ways to get ahead you can still beat them through better team play. They never really seem to be in a try hard mood though.
Q: How does MMR for teams work?
Honestly no clue at all. We just been getting winning and to some degree getting lucky with all the skips. If I had to make a guess it would be because Do Not Towerdive was on a Diamond 5 ranked team previously so his MMR could have given us a edge.
Q: Why not talk more about replays?
The reason is similar to team compositions answer where so few people will do it that its probably just better to make a different article about it. That way I can be super involved in it and it does not take away from this one.
Q: Will there be more complex or more in-depth guides?
I would love to get more in-depth about everything in separate articles because I don't want this to be 10 pages of me just explaining every little detail. Honestly I could already start articles going into more detail of our team compositions and replays already. More will come as we get farther and as we get better.
Q: Why isn’t there anything about Twisted Tree line?
I don’t like 3v3 ranked teams to be honest. It was in season three when I saw a challenger boarder on a silver division solo queue player. The idea of someone being able to get challenger in 3v3 but can’t climb solo queue ladder made it hard for me to respect the 3v3 ladder because it really spoke about the skill level. Granted it does take skill to even make it to challenger but I won’t be doing anything about 3v3.
Q: May we see the match history?