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Oct 28, 2013

Reflections on Hitting Diamond + Solo Queue


Hey everyone, 

It's been a while since my last post so I figured I'd pause and reflect on a couple points running through solo queue on my way to Diamond that might help you in your own games.

  • Division I LP throttling
  • How to Carry
  • Who Can Carry
  • Mind Set/Attitude
Division I Elo Throttling
First up I'd like to address LP throttling. As most of you know, once you've played a decent number of games in solo queue, once you hit Division I, you'll notice a sudden drop in LP gains per win, generally from around 20 LP in Divisions V through II to around 3~6 LP per win in Division I.

While it doesn't really seem fair, and I certainly felt that way at first, just remember that for the most part, everyone has to deal with the same hidden match making Elo. If anything, it's just Riot's way to give us more motivation since we're "so close" by letting us get through the first 4 divisions faster.

The amount of wins necessary to get from Division I to the next Tier will unfortunately be about the same as getting from Divisions 5 through 2, and as long as you accept the fact before hand, you just have to go with the flow and keep winning.

How to Carry
To really "CARRY" a game, you can do a few things:
  1. Outplay
  2. Outsmart
  3. Outcontrol
Outplay: This means that you simply have better mechanics than the enemy champion, and happen to be better. Although this will happen if you truly are better, relying on this means that eventually you will stagnate and stop gaining Elo once you meet players of equal skill. Except for you WildTurtle.

Outsmart: This means you might not have mechanics that are as good as the enemy, but you manage to make a play where they can't respond, such as 5v4 at a forced Baron, camping an unwarded bush, running the enemy team through a field of mushrooms, etc. These plays require foresight, but are things a "silver" can easily pull off against a "platinum".

Outcontrol: This leads to outsmarting, and means that by either warding well, or pushing hard enough to bring more than 1 person to stop you in lane (without dying yourself), you've given your team a 4v3 advantage. (See Teemo)

Who Can Carry
This means that there are lots of champions that can fit each role, and obviously stronger champions will have an easier time outplaying. For example, in mathematical terms, say one champion has 100 HP and deals 100 damage. Meanwhile, another champion has 100.5 HP and deals 100 damage. While the difference isn't that much, and this is a very simple illustration, even a small advantage can lead to victory.
  1. Outplay - Zed, Ahri, Fizz, Kassadin
  2. Outsmart - Player based
  3. Outcontrol - Support Champions, Nidalee, Teemo, Tryndamere, Jax, Rammus, etc.
While by no means perfect, the solo queue tier list on this site provides a good starting point (imho) for champions to look for:

I know this point has been stressed over and over, so I'll keep it simple:
  1. Don't rage
  2. You will eventually lose games
  3. You will eventually win games
  4. Playing your best will give you higher success than not playing your best
  5. People are bad, deal with it
  6. Help your teammates, they appreciate it when you save them more than if you leave them to die. Even if you both die, for some reason they're never that mad.
  7. Learn to type fast, the number of players who die typing is startling
  8. Ward and pink ward (until season 4)
I know those last two aren't really mindset/attitude, but they're still very helpful.

Ending Statement: This game's hard, since you'll generally need to cooperate to win, and eventually you'll run into people who are better than you. (Except you WildTurtle, you da best). Not only that, but sometimes you'll run into smurfs and/or underranked people who will absolutely smash someone else on your team and you as well. Happens. 

Even though I'm Diamond now, that doesn't mean I can play every champion at a decent level, and I'll even lose to gold and silver players on occasion. But remember, if you can outplay, outsmart, and outcontrol, even the bleakest situations can be turned into victories.

Got any questions? Ask me anything in the comment section below! The floor's always open, but for this post I'll give some special attention to answering :)

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  1. I've succeeded making it to gold, but now I aimed for platinum, and I seem to be forever stuck in Gold V :/ for every game I win, I lose another 2 or 3. Been playing mostly Sej and Sona so far, but I've considered giving Fiddles a chance, and maybe playing movespeed Annie in mid, worked pretty well to me in normals

  2. 9. You may think you aren't but you are bad, do what it takes to improve.

  3. I completely disagree with helping others specially below platinum, I've seen so many people lose a game because they went in to die with the guy getting caught facechecking, come on man.

  4. You should also add "Side pushing while trying to tell your time to clear waves and hold base", once I got aced and the push I left bot took inhib + tower.

  5. Don't feel bad, Vs and Is are the hardest ones, because in gold V you're stuck with elo boosted/bad players who troll cause they gold now/ etc..

  6. Yeah, most of my lost ganes are due to someone stupidly feeding or gone mad like omg you noobs we ain't goona win this game blah blah... Still I try to improve every game, maybr I won't make it to plat, but as long as I get out of gold V I'll be happy

  7. Same here I started climbing when I stopped looking at my team's mistakes and just mine and the enemy's alone.

  8. MyNutsDontLastOctober 28, 2013

    Good points made. I think you are definitely right. But all the champs you listed to carry are mid laners :p I feel like champions like sej, J4, lee sin, rene, nasus and jax can all carry equally as hard. I hit gold a few months ago, and getting thru silver 1 was hell. (Getting bad teammates and having to win like 20 games in a row to get to promo) I thought I was done with ranked for the season but I went back and played a few games and got to Gold 4. I was like wow that was easy. So I said lets go plat and pushed for about a month or less and ended up getting to my promo. I was stuck at 99 lp for 5 straight games! all wins too. Got to my promo and won 3 in a row. How did I win so many in a row? Nasus. if you can farm and stack q you can 1v5 a whole team and make them run in terror. It's great. Ended up 26-8 with nasus with one week of playing him lol. Sorry for getting off track, but theres hope for everyone. Just play carry champs and never give up just cause one lane feeds. Good luck

  9. Thats the spirit SSJ ! Congratulatiion for D4 :) you deserve it!!!

  10. Tomás LacerdaOctober 29, 2013

    Hey mate, I'm having an issue.
    As a player, I don't rage, I do understand that you win some, you lose some, but the thing is, I started losing some games, got some few unlucky players on the team, but then it started snowballing, my MMR started to go downhill, and now I'm playing against players that are Silver V and Bronze II, when I'm Gold V.
    I'm not a terrific player, but I do hold my lane, I know the importance of farm, of objectives, but It's so, but so hard to find teams that share the same focus that's becoming so frustrating. And it's becoming inevitable to lose more than I win, even though I try to help and guide the team. I get excellent comps but players just fail to either focus, build, teamplay, and one man can't carry a team.
    What can I do mate?

  11. Dean BloomingdaleOctober 29, 2013

    Great article. I love the concept of three ways to carry games, gives you something to focus on according to your playstyle! Like for instance, I focus on out-controlling, and my main champions are supports, Jax, and Rammus. Thanks for the tips. POSITIVE ATTITUDES WIN GAMES.

  12. Nicolas CageOctober 29, 2013

    IMO, it is easiest to carry games from mid-lane relative to other positions, followed by top-lane. Junglers tend to have lower gold than the rest of their team and not end up fed to the point where they can carry games (unless you play certain carry-styled junglers), ADCs are very vulnerable mid-game and early-game, generally speaking, while supports tend to lack the ability to win games by themselves. Top-lane's easier to gank than mid, and tends not to scale into the mid-game quite as well as APCs can (lots of damage mid-game if fed, + capacity to roam well). (this is a mix of personal opinion/experiences and what I've read from other players online, you may find that you can carry games better from another position)

    So, operating under the assumption that mid-lane is the easiest role to carry from (meaning that assuming you win lane, you have the strongest immediate impact on the game), what sort of champion should you choose? I'd recommend playing a mid-lane that isn't necessarily an assassin, since assassins can be easily removed from the field if the other team focuses them. Right now, I'm playing Brand a lot, because of his massive AOE burst and strong laning phase. Orianna, TF, Nidalee and Zyra are other champions I imagine would fit well in this capacity too.

    Final suggestion would be to try duo-queue with a few of your friends and see what happens. At the very least, Skyping with someone gives you a fair bit of additional coordination and the chance to orchestrate some plays. Would recommend duo-queueing with a Jungler if you're interested in playing a mid-lane champ, since they can have the most immediate impact on getting you fed..

    (again, this post is purely my opinion and stems from my experiences and the advice given to me. Your mileage may vary, but I feel as if these tips can probably help you out a bit)

  13. MyNutsDontLastOctober 29, 2013

    I agree that mid can carry the best most of the time, I main lux and used her for about 260 games this season (I also think fizz ahri swain and ori can carry extremely hard as well) but I realized once you throw a tanky or bruiser champion on the enemy top lane or jungle, everything changes. If Rene, nasus, garen, j4, lee sin, sej , or singed get a good farm and maybe a kill or two, they can shut down carry champs pretty easily imo, if built right. Obviously not every game, but I can't tell you how many games I get really fed with one of these champs and then a j4 with a ancient golem and and something like a sun fire can completely shut me out. Also wukong is a game changer if they know the play style

  14. Juan D. OrtizOctober 29, 2013

    you are a slut

  15. Dean BloomingdaleOctober 29, 2013

    Go away, Juan... -_-

  16. (strandedon)thewrongbeachOctober 30, 2013

    Help your teammates, they appreciate it when you save them more than if you leave them to die. Even if you both die, for some reason they're never that mad.

    I don't agree with this. Mainly because I've lost games by helping those guys

  17. Juan D. OrtizOctober 30, 2013

    you unsanitary filthy unwashed harlot

  18. Juan D. OrtizOctober 30, 2013

    :D u know its true

  19. you dont really need to learn to type fast if you use skype lol hackz :P

  20. i dont agree. one time i was feeding kinda hard, and since one more death on my part wasnt going to make that much of a difference, i started concentrating on saving our udyr, who was actually doing pretty well.we won that mach.

  21. What champs do you recommend for snowballing/carrying?

  22. IWantDiamund2November 22, 2013

    but i play ezrale and i e and i outplay outsmart and outcontol. y i only silver? i want diamund. pls halp. u duo que with me plz? i good. message me in game plz. DeathCrayon my name. ty. pls


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