Sep 23, 2016

Top 10 Riskiest Plays in League of Legends

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Introduction

Everyone likes to be praised for a sick play that completely turns the tables of a game. However, many of these plays tend to be high risk with variable levels of reward. Before attempting a play like this, it is important to figure out what kind of risk-reward ratio is available and try to avoid anything that could be game-changing in a negative way.

Below is a set of the ten riskiest plays in League of Legends, coupled with some risk-reward analysis to go along with them. Let us know which risks you are willing to take and which ones you stay away from in the comments section!

Flash Hook

Flash hook primarily refers to champions like Thresh or Blitzcrank, but can also be substituted with other long range skill shots like Ahri's Charm or Nidalee's Spear. Essentially, the idea is that by flashing, you make an otherwise impossible skill shot somewhat more possible.

When to do it:
  • The target has no more gap closers or summoners;
  • The target is a very high priority target;
  • You and your teammates have kill potential on the target; and
  • You are not a higher priority target than who you are aiming for.
If the criteria above is not ALL met, then I generally consider the play too risky to attempt.

Facecheck Bushes

Unless a bush is already warded, walking into an unwarded bush with multiple enemies missing is likely one of the worst ideas in League. The benefit is of course, is to gain the advantage of being in the bush and become invisible to enemies. This allows you to sneak up close to the enemy without being seen and gain an offensive advantage.

When to do it:
  • When you are aware of where the enemy laner is; and
  • You are not in danger of dying to needing a recall if there is an enemy in the bush.
Mostly, avoid doing it unless you know the bush is empty, especially during mid to late game when everyone is roaming around the map. Early game it is okay since most people do not camp level 1 bushes anymore unless they are playing Darius.

Sneaking Dragon/Baron

Trying to sneak an objective can be very rewarding. It allows you to gain a passive advantage, and is not particularly difficult if you already have one or more Earth Dragon buffs.

When to do it:
  • Your lanes are winning;
  • You either used a pink ward or a scanner to clear the area of wards;
  • You know where the enemy jungler is relatively located; and
  • You are strong enough to solo and/or duo it down quickly.
If the above criteria is not met, then it is generally better to bring four to five people or risk a potential throw, especially at Baron.

Tower Diving

In the right scenarios, tower diving is good for picking up easy kills from enemies that have overstayed their welcome. Meanwhile, in the wrong scenarios it simply provides enemy players with easy multi-kills via tower damage.

When to do it:
  • You know which of the enemy summoners are on cooldown and are accounting for them;
  • You know where the enemy jungler is located or have good ward coverage around the tower;
  • You know the enemy top lane's teleport is down or they are low on health; and
  • You think you can take down the enemy behind their turret.
If ALL of the criteria are not met, then I would avoid tower diving. Too often do people only consider the last point and end up throwing their lane for free.

Jungle Invade

Invading the enemy jungle is a high-risk and potentially high payoff type of strategy. As a jungler, if you can eliminate the enemy gank threat early, then your lanes are free to be aggressive early. If you end up denying additional enemies experience by pulling them into their own jungle to help, then even better. 

However, be sure not to overstay your welcome, end up needing to blow your flash for nothing,or worse, die to one of the enemy laners with a buff on.

For experienced junglers only.

Backdoor

Rushing into the enemy base behind the creep wave is generally something reserved for late game when you have the damage and durability to take down buildings quickly. However, if done at the right time it can mean a come-from-behind victory against all odds.

When to do it:
  • The enemy team is clearly engaged somewhere else such as against your team or against Baron;
  • The enemy team will not be able to recall before you accomplish an objective; and
  • The enemy team cannot end the game faster than you can.
Sometimes, it is also advantageous if you know you cannot defend against an enemy push alone, but can take out some objectives to recoop losses.

Proxy

This is arguably the most dangerous strategy on the list, and has an extremely high chance of getting you killed. The idea behind proxying is that you tank enemy minions behind the enemy turrets. This causes your own minions to reach enemy turrets faster, losing the enemy CS and creating siege power. However, this also places you deep in enemy lines and taking extensive damage while in danger of being ganked. 

If you manage to survive long enough and draw enemy champions to you, then you create enormous pressure on the map and allow your team to accomplish other objectives. Meanwhile, enemies are denied experience.

When to proxy:
  • When you are very confident and have practiced it many times (in someone else's games).

Pushing Without Wards

In comparison to proxying, this is likely one of the least dangerous tactics on this list. If you are sufficiently strong enough to fight multiple enemies at once, pushing without wards can be extremely effective. By never placing a ward, you naturally get the enemy laner to demand that his jungler help out the lane that is "not even warded". If they don't, then towers will quickly fall.

When to do this:
  • You are sufficiently confident that you can 1v2;
  • You are aware of where the enemy jungler is; or
  • You naturally have escapes other than your summoners.
This tactic alleviates a lot of pressure around the map. However, if you find yourself feeding the enemy jungler, then maybe you should drop some wards.

Early Game All-Ins

If you manage to net a kill early in the game (levels 1-3), this sets you up immensely by providing gold, experience, a CS advantage, and extra damage on the enemy turret. However, keep in mind that you should only do it early for one of the following reasons:
  • You have a level and/or creep wave advantage;
  • The enemy just missed a big cooldown spell;
  • The enemy mispositioned and took tower damage; and/or
  • The enemy has a summoner spell disadvantage.
It is also possible to succeed without the above, but you would need to know the match-up very well.

1v5 Battles

When you get extremely far ahead to the point where you feel unkillable and/or are one-shotting squishies, you may decide you can 1v5. However, this is generally a bad idea as crowd-control and stacking spells can whittle down the strongest of champions.

If you feed the enemy kill spree gold, they may also come back with enough penetration items to make you much weaker in comparison to before. 

When to do it:
  • When you are going for the highlight clip;
  • When you feel like displaying your dominance; or
  • When you want to give the enemy team a chance to win.
Personally, I would not recommend it in ranked play.

Which strategies above are your favorite? Are there any that you like/dislike but were not mentioned above? Comment below!




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