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The Support Thread


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#1 Bloody_sorcerer

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 03:22 AM

Some day, this thread will contain important, factual information about how to be good at support in League of Legends. For now, I will summarize as follows:

  • Buy wards
  • Buy more wards
  • Buy oracles
  • Have a positive attitude
  • Don't have a negative attitude
  • Play sona, she is the best

Some other good supports include Blitzcrank, Thresh, Janna, and Nami. Supports that don't seem to see much play any more include Soraka, Nunu, and Leona. Sona is by far the best, though.

Torture/terrorism/war/taxes? Whatever. But if this motherfucker doesn't realize why the heroic strike change is complete shit...

STOP SHITTING UP THE THREAD MALAN


#2 Targh

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 12:26 PM

I've been having some fun with 'off-piste' supports like Zac. He has a ton of crowd control (everything except his W, essentially) and is a great late game tank.

I tried Alistar (who you omitted) and just can't get into him. I find I'm bad with most long-knockback characters as I just can't get the aim right and end up helping them escape more often than knocking them into my team.

At what point do you generally pick up oracles? And how do you avoid being blamed for a terrible ADC who won't actually use what you give them (+AD shields, lantern etc) and then blames you for being bad?

I humbly submit there's a difference between kicking someone when they're down and kicking someone when they're :downs:


#3 Lanky

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 01:01 PM

The trick with Alistair is actually his hidden ability to Headbutt, buffering stomp, in order to move right to an enemy and knock them up. You do this, quite simply, by mashing stomp while travelling towards the hero you are about to headbutt. Faster mashing is better here, since latency can actually prevent this from happening. The other trick is obviously boots of mobility + flash + headbutt to knock an opponent directly back into towers/ allies, etc. But its cutesy, and the first trick is generally better overall.

That said, heroes like thresh simply do what Alistair does with MUCH easier combos, more overall damage, and far better survivability.

I personally do not think Sona is the best universal support at all. Thresh pretty clearly is. He is one of the best heroes released in years, and if largely unchanged will see competitive play for years. He can change the state of the game extremely easily and is incredible to play on if your team is awake.

I usually buy oracles immediately after the first dragon drops, regardless of who does it. If my support goldflow is good, I buy it regardless of Dragon timers after my second uber cheap Gp10 item (I always get wardstone first, then Gp10 stone, and then usually Kage's lucky pick into Oracles).

As to your third point: Ignore them completely. One of the hardest things to do in Solo Queue League of Legends is to ignore people who are just generally unpleasant and bad at the same time, but it is something that has to be done if you want to progress up the brackets.

#4 Asmik

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 03:19 PM

I think one of the important factors for a thread like this has to be that you start a post with what league you're talking about. Silver play is much more forgiving than anything higher. Kind of like the old "you must have a valid profile to post".

I don't think there's a lot of value in getting a 4 minute oracle after dragon - the gold might be there sure, but what objective are you trying to control? 10-13 minutes into the game are you going back to lane or trying push/prevent pushing? Seems like an odd time.

#5 Bloody_sorcerer

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 03:40 PM

That's a good point about leagues. I think thresh is extremely overrated at lower levels of play, and plausibly in solo queue altogether - I have almost never been impressed by thresh play in silver or gold. In my mind, at least, the key that really makes thresh magical is his lantern, except using it effectively is either dependent on exceptionally good teammates or on exceptional communication, which are two things you just don't see in gold/silver. Champions like sona and janna, on the other hand, can forcibly save your teammates from themselves.

Torture/terrorism/war/taxes? Whatever. But if this motherfucker doesn't realize why the heroic strike change is complete shit...

STOP SHITTING UP THE THREAD MALAN


#6 Montegomery

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 04:39 PM

That's also a point against Blitz as well. He's practically always banned in Silver/Gold, but he's utterly useless if your AD/team isn't prepared/able to jump your hook target.

Silver players are also terrible with him.

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#7 Playered

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 07:51 PM

Zyra is still a very effective support to help steamroll a lane. The main advantage being very safe long range harassment, throw-away CC which if you miss is no big deal but if you land it you can follow-up reasonably well. Not to mention that seeds are 30(?) seconds of temporary vision you can throw around on places you have no ward to cover but expect the possibility of a gank to come from. While her ult isn't as effective as Sona's it has good potential for countering a balls-in (such as Ez shifting in vs your ADC, jungle initiates) but also on being used offensively if you land your root for unexpected damage with your plants.

I ended up going from Gold-1 to Diamond-4 almost solely playing her rather than my normal Lulu. You've got to be really comfortable playing an aggressive lane (Ignite unless the enemy team has 2 divers such as assassins/bruisers) and in all but rare cases I've been able to outpoke against sustain supports (Sona/Nami) enough to keep the lane at least even.


You really need to work out what kind of support player you are, to start with I was very conservative and played rather defensively. I then started playing Sona and enjoyed the easy poke, following that I moved on to Leona, Lulu played maxing Q and taking MPen runes and then finally Zyra on a glass-cannon build. Each champion I played over 60 games in a row with in ranked and clearly understood that I loved being able to provide unexpected damage in really offensive plays. People also do not expect supports to build/play overly aggressively and if you can pose yourself as that kind of threat, the enemy team becomes indecisive on who to focus which does nothing but help you.

It's probably not ideal being so static as some comps are worth adapting for, an example being if the team has Akali or Vayne then Lulu is amazing for being able to negate their temporary escape stealth. Ignite is also really worth considering, especially against sustain lanes, far more frequently than it is currently used with the exception of cases I mentioned above.

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#8 Starfire

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Posted 20 August 2013 - 11:31 PM

I think mentioning the League/Division thing is really important, because while Janna is pretty much a hardcounter to Leona in Diamond, I promise you to the average Bronze player and even some Silver player they view Leona as a counter to Janna. Because, oh my god, she can gap close, stunlock and she's so tanky!

Everyone should start from the same place and rise based on their abilities, desires, and schedule. No one plays MMOs to *be* powerful, they play MMOs to *become* powerful. It's the journey, stupid. The rarer loot is, the more cherished it is when you get it, but only so long as there is a reasonable expectation to get it. The rarer loot is, the better it feels when you kill a boss or when $AWESOME_TRINKET drops.


#9 Playered

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Posted 21 August 2013 - 09:44 AM

I think mentioning the League/Division thing is really important, because while Janna is pretty much a hardcounter to Leona in Diamond, I promise you to the average Bronze player and even some Silver player they view Leona as a counter to Janna. Because, oh my god, she can gap close, stunlock and she's so tanky!


Janna is generally a counter to comps who require being in close proximity for a short time, think Kennen, Zac, Jarvan, Zin'xhao etc and also an excellent pick for teams who focus on kiting/speed (Udyr, Nidalee, Ashe etc). If played well she is undoubtedly one of the harder opponents for a Leona but a Diamond level Leona is likely equally prepared to manage Janna's skills.

You have to keep in mind it all boils down to Janna landing Q to interrupt Leona, if that fails then the massive amount of burst than can be applied by one Leona combo will at least make it so the second landing will be a kill. Janna relies on being able to kite and manage sustained damage and that is not something which can easily be done vs a Leona lane, it all comes down to her Q.

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#10 Lanky

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 11:31 AM

I think Thresh is overrated in silver, sure, but not by as much as you might think. He ends up as 'tanky' as Lenoa, does more damage, and can start fights almost as well, with the added benefit that you get an excellent hook skill and a solid poke on his standard attacks. I agree that the lantern is by far his best skill and that it shines most in good teams, but, I've played numerous games as Thresh where the simple fact that I threw a lantern on my mentally-stunted adc made the player click it, and I have saved them from themselves that way a fair chunk. It's harder to get junglers to us the lantern properly, on some heroes it is easy (Xin, Jarvan, anyone with another good gap close really), and on some it is often entirely ineffectual (Nasus, etc)

On the point about the oracles, I should be clear that it's just a general rule for me and not ironclad. Early dragons for my side don't motivate me to immediately turn in and grab an oracles, but if I think I can easily deny buff vision and darken the fog of the entire bottom lane with an oracles at that point, I will do it, it is good value for money. I won't grab one on slower or squishier supports at that juncture, but on a Janna or a thresh I will absolutely do it.

But what might be a better use of our time is assessing the best 'rules' a solo queue support player should live by, in different divisions, in different situations. We can talk picks too: you're fifth and going to be playing support, you see some strange selfish toplane picks (Yorick or Quinn or Darius or something), and a fairly pedestrian midlane pick (Malthasar), you get a standard Caitlyn adc partner who called it at the beginning. In that scenario I think I would do what Playered does and take an ignite Zyra with aggressive runes, or a Thresh because I feel like I can carry adc players on that hero, but that is just me.




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