Your Daily McMaster: the great 2014 League of Legends reboot

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It’s a new year and with it people like to make resolutions. Some want to lose weight or quit smoking, but not me. I already quit and I’m one sexy machine. I’m not a huge fan of resolutions because they’ve just become this wistful imagining of what I might do instead of what I want to happen. So, this year, I resolve to reach the highest possible level in League of Legends… and I’m starting from the absolute bottom. Yes, that’s right, I’m in the dreaded Bronze V. This might take a while.

After the jump, the plan

In the interest of full disclosure, I’ll go ahead and set the stage. Here’s my profile on the popular Korean LoL site, OP.GG. To succeed in my goal, I’m going to need to figure out a plan of attack. The first few steps are easy and are already in progress as I’m trying to hedge my season 4 placement by taking advantage of lax pre-season rankings.

When I came back to League of Legends after over a year break, I jumped into ranked play almost immediately without checking out the new meta game or anything I may have missed. This lead me straight to Bronze V! I don’t have that many ranked games played, less than 100 at this point, so I obviously need to play more ranked games. That’s step one and is handily underway.

Step one and a half. This step is one I hadn’t expected, but hit me anyway. I got the shakes. After years of playing games against people on the internet, I started having super anxiety issues. I’d get into a game and if someone said something negative I’d fall apart. I started avoiding play against people at all and only played against bots. This really, really hurt my game. After a few weeks of not playing people, I started researching my issue and have found a lot of perspective from other players that helped immensely. Funnily enough, there are a lot of articles about this phenomenon and most of them are about StarCraft II, so it was easy to apply the advice and techniques to LoL. Now, when I play, I still get discouraged some times, but I can make it through the game without having a panic attack. This alone, improved my game tenfold.

The second step would be watching streams and reading up on the new meta. This is another step in progress. I’ve been watching streams and frequenting the League of Legends Reddit for several months as well as reading an online book about the game(expect a book review down the road). I have learned a lot from this process and am looking forward to learning more.

The third step is one I’ve just recently started – critiques from high level players. My first shot at having my game analyzed comes with the help of Diamond III support player, Froskurinn. She dedicates her stream, on certain days, to helping low level players understand their mistakes. That’s very, very cool in my books. Being that I want to improve, I signed up. Last Friday, she observed my match and commented upon my performance (which wasn’t as bad as I expected) and saved the result to Twitch for later viewing. Today, friends, I present that game to you: Froskurinn spectating Vonnegut in Bronze V.

I made a few stupid mistakes and kind of freaked out because I knew I was being spectated. I forgot to buy stuff on my first back, creeped poorly, etc, but finally got it together. Please enjoy my trek across the map as snow day Singed – it ends well.

Step four, well, I’m not sure yet. My goal is to reach Challenger, which isn’t going to happen. My soft goal is to reach Gold and then re-evaluate my skill. I’m sure another step will come up along the way. If you’d like to watch me fail, live, come check out my progress on my Twitch channel.