People want higher Elo as a means of proving to others that, “Yeah, I am good at this game.” I am by no means a perfect or pro player at my current level, but I do consider myself more than competent on a good day. I can throw down with others just fine. I practice a lot to make myself a tad better every day, soaking in information and studying high-level strategies to improve.
I particularly want good Elo because I know my true rating hasn’t even been reached yet. However, to attain this true Elo is a grueling process, constantly mired by one discouraging experience after another.
I am someone who needs to vent after a truly aggravating ranked match. My friends always tell me to take it easy after a ranked loss, otherwise I will end up making it worse. You win some, you lose some, but the thing with the Elo grind is how you obviously want more wins than losses. The moment you queue up, you just hope with all your heart that the matchmaking gods will not screw you over with allies you are going to end up hating after everything is said and done.
So my last ranked game went like this …
Right off the bat, trouble began after no more than 10 seconds at the most. The “captain” wanted to give our fifth-slot player a mini-lecture about how the last person to pick in a ranked queue should always be the support. This started a disruptive argument among all the players. I compromised and said that I will fill the support role and that everyone should calm down and just focus on the task at hand, which was picking a strong team composition so we can improve our odds of winning. I am cool with playing support because it is my best role by far.
And then it came down to our last ban, so I kept emphasizing to the “captain” that we needed to ban Diana, the recently released champ in the game. As a general rule of thumb, it is always good to ban a new character who was just introduced to the game. A lot of players are not used to the new character yet, plus banning them means you do not have to deal with said character, regardless how powerful their real strength is. It is just a safe bet to assume the new character is going to cause problems.
Of course, the brilliant “captain” opts to ban Zyra instead. I was awestruck and dumbfounded. This was an absurdly stupid ban on a lot of levels. Sure, let’s not ban the character who just came out whose actual power is not quite gauged yet. Instead, you ban a champ who had literally a GIANT ESSAY written about why she was getting multiple nerfs. Ugh.
Lo and behold, the enemy team grabs Diana as their first pick. Surprise, surprise. Whatever. Some characters are bound to slip past the banning block, so it just boils down to your team being sane enough to grab characters who work well together against the enemy team’s lineup. Execution wins games, even at at disadvantage. Sounds easy on paper, but a lot of people apparently have not grasped this very important concept.
Case in point, another mishap would occur just 30 seconds later.
OK, so the enemy team grabs Nasus, who is obviously going to be their top lane champion. Our top laner has not yet chosen, so I am thinking, “All right, he can just counter-pick the Nasus and have an easy time up top.”
And then bam … here comes the Yorick pick. I immediately began to plead/reason with him to pick something else. “Nasus counters Yorick!” This was a recipe for failure just waiting to happen, but of course the guy just locks in right away. It could have been pride in his Yorick, it could have been arrogance or it could have been ignorance, but it was nonetheless a very dumb move.
Want to know why I know it was a dumb move? Because I actually take the time to learn strategies from sites like LoL Pro. So how is that site’s information credible? Because only LoL pros are allowed to write guides for this site. Only the best of the best. Cream of the crop. The bee’s knees.
Here is a link to a pro Yorick guide. Scroll down to the bottom and you will notice something very, very self-explanatory.
Hmm, this guide that was written by a pro states that Nasus is a counter to Yorick, which means …
All right, so you pick a champion who loses to another champion. The opponent just showed you his rock, but you mindlessly bring out your pair of scissors to match him. Yeah, great move. Very great move. -_-
So the team comps were finalized.
On paper, my team’s lineup was OK. Not particularly efficient, but we had enough weapons to make it work. We had some crowd control as well as a lot of potential damage output. However, things get dicey when you consider what we had to face against. We had to fight the newcomer Diana (again, I cannot stress enough how dumb it is not to ban a new champ), the Nasus at top lane who was undeniably going to win against our Yorick if he had any merit as a top laner. Furthermore, Ahri is a safer mage to use than Kassadin, who has an awful early game and relies on snowballing as the game drags on.
I regret this now, but I should have dodged this queue. We had a lot of stupid banter prior to the game even starting, and our team comp wasn’t as airtight as I would have liked it. Sure, one would like to give your teammates the benefit of the doubt and assume they will leave all the arguing aside to focus on executing a proper game of LoL to win the match and add to our Elo stats so we can all be happy campers, but I unfortunately assumed wrong.
Quick Breakdown about the Match
- I was Taric at bot lane. Support is my best role, after all. Corki and I CRUSHED bottom. We killed Ezreal and Lulu multiple times and took their tower rather easily.
- Mid lane was a disaster. Kassadin was getting killed by Ahri and Diana too many times, he was underfarmed and did not seem to know how to use his champion at all. Like, come on. If you don’t even know how to do a basic Kassadin ult warp-into-slow combo, why are you playing him? In a ranked match no less. As further insult to injury, I suspected Kassadin did not know English. His username was foreign sounding and he did not respond to anything we told him.
- Nautilus, our “captain,” was mediocre in the jungle. He did not really gank that well and was always behind the enemy Diana in terms of gold and jungle presence. This is what happens when you don’t ban the new character.
- Our top laner, the Yorick, ended up getting dominated by Nasus. Man, ‘I told you so’ does not even suffice. Of course, the Yorick refused to admit that it was his bad champ pick that led to him losing so badly at top. It was because jungle didn’t gank for him. Look, bro. I have to say that 9/10 times when people cry about a lack of jungle support, it is usually their fault they are losing their lane. Picking your own counter-pick would thus fall into the 9/10 category. You set yourself up for failure and act surprised that you are not thriving. Furthermore, you having a terrible attitude of constantly complaining 24/7 just makes the situation even worse.
- We then started to fall behind as the game went on, suffering one defeat after another in important team fights and other situations. A real mess.
- I ended up losing my cool as the game continued. I started off as the guy who tried to keep everyone under control, but I too lost my composure the moment the crap really hit the fan.
I want to focus on the last point in particular about this ranked match that we ultimately ended up losing. I do not like being angry. It hurts being mad. It is unpleasant. It causes you to feel like punching the wall. Sure, LoL is a game, but a game can definitely draw out your emotions depending on how the match goes.
I got my buttons pushed. My teammates upset me this much that I am honestly embarrassed for myself that I sunk to their level. I was fed up with the poor play from my teammates, I became frustrated that we spent more time bickering among ourselves instead of putting our effort toward fighting the enemy team and, above all else, I was furious about the loss of Elo in the end.
It is LoL matches like this one that make me not want to play the game for long periods of time. Some people have good Elo because they invest the time and energy to put up with the crap that the mode entails. I am hundreds of games short compared to the regular player who has achieved “good” Elo, but I ask myself often … at what cost? Is it worth putting my happiness as a gamer through the ringer sometimes? Is it worth stomaching some horrid gaming experiences that make you feel awful for the rest of the day?
Ugh, I just have to remember that it is just one game in the grand scheme of things. Those who try hard enough are the ones who should eventually succeed, right?
Dat Elo grind. Very challenging. Sometimes, it doesn’t seem worth the trouble.