A new approach to laning in LOL… an introduction to the double jungle roaming support meta.
I’ve watching, playing and analyzing the 3rd ranked season for league of legends with particular interest.
I know our current meta revolves around a couple of basic concepts;
1) An adc + support in one lane
2) Two solo lanes
3) A jungler
The way these lanes interact is variable, with 2 v 1 lanes happening frequently in competitive games, looking to “starve” the opposing solo player of both experience and gold. The second outcome of doing this revolves around establishing “map control” over the opposing team, by effectively taking control of their jungle.
Now, jungle changes in season 3 have made jungling a bit more difficult. Jungle mobs have more health overall, and are more difficult to take down. Junglers can still gank early, but have to do so with a high CC jungler, in order to ensure kills, lest they die themselves in the process of ganking; and nobody wants to solo lane against a double buff opponent at 5 min into the game.
Which leads me to the following…
I have been watching a lot of DOTA 2, as gaming in general is a big hobby of mine and I don’t discriminate watching matches based on gaming preference, and became extremely interested in their meta.
I will try to VERY briefly explain what I mean.
The DOTA 2 meta sometimes employs triple lanes to deny farm and experience, they sometimes play 2 v 1 in both lanes and just hope that ganks are sufficient to snowball the lane, and sometimes they play a rather peculiar double roam support game, which looks to capitalize on early aggression in order to snowball the lanes in their favor; it’s this last one that particularly interested me.
It stands to be said that mid is typically left to their own devices, the top and bottom lanes are where the majority of lane switching and champion denying take place.
Currently, junglers fall into one of two categories
1) Carry Junglers
2) Heavy CC support junglers
I can safely say, that after watching 3 weeks of LCS, the latter has taken over as the role of choice in the current meta. Which got me to thinking: Don’t we have two champions in the game that fulfill similar roles? The Duo-lane support sacrifices gold for utility, and only gains experience in the lane. The support jungler also sacrifices gold for utility, they do achieve better items than traditional supports, but late game they are also not the primary damage dealers in their teams, the carries are.
All this lead to the following theorycrafting…
The possibility of a double support-jungle meta is completely viable. And before you call me crazy, hear me out.
The jungle offers two things that supports want: money and experience. In season 2, I would have told you that having two people roaming around in the jungle was a bad idea, not so in season 3.
Currently the amount of experience to be gained in the jungle is:
If we divide this by sections, that means that Blue buff side gets 474 xp, while red side gets 591 xp.
Now, here is where it gets interesting, and I need you all to follow me on this.
The total amount of experience that a champion gets per minion wave in lane is:
Castor Minion x 3
Experience: (29.44 x 3)/2 = 41.66 exp (+2.76 / 3 min)
Melee Minion x 3
Experience: (58.88 x 3)/2 = 88.32 exp (+4.6 / 3 min) (+4.6 / 3 min)
Total experience gained in lane after first minion wave = 129.98, every 30 seconds a new wave will spawn, and every 3 waves will include a cannon minion in them. The waves take about 30 seconds to reach the first turret, and about another 30 seconds or so for the ADC to last hit the waves adequately (we are not assuming he is pushing the lane). The first wave will arrive to lane at about 2 min, be farmed at about 2:30, and the second wave will be arriving shortly thereafter, being taken completely at about 3 mins into the game, and so on. We can say, that the AVERAGE experience gained is about 289.96 every minute (I divided the siege minion xp by 3 since they span every three waves and added it to the total xp for a minute), without taking into account other factors like pushing your lane or being denied experience.
In the jungle, you have an average of about 1065/2 = 532.5 exp after the first run through with both supports taking the jungle.
Now, a champion needs a total of 280 xp to get to the next level (2), so, theoretically, champions sharing XP from the jungle, and doing jungle together should reach level 2 fairly quickly (it takes exactly Blue buff, wolves, Red Buff), but even better, this should allow the duo jungling team to keep abreast of the xp they would be gaining in lane! The power of this team is not farming, but GANKING and applying pressure to the rest of lanes. This includes denying experience, denying gold, and denying map control.
This also tentatively means more wards, more counterjungling, and better map control for the team that has this duo roaming support team.
Supports and junglers are usually behind in levels at the mid-late stages of the game anyways along with being starved for gold, their CC and auras making up for their lack of levels and gold. Their main focus in to lock down the opposing enemy in order for their carries to melt face, with this method, you would potentially have 3 high level and highly farmed carries on your team, with 2 champions supporting with CC in the backlines.
This strategy is by no means foolproof, and needs intense ganking coordination (to chain CC) and champion synergy in order to be pulled off.
That means that choosing the correct champions for this role is essential, and early ganking is encouraged with a heavy cc dual support jungling team.
The great thing is that any of the following supports and junglers can mesh well with this theory:
J4, Trundle, Taric, Leona, Zyra, Xin, Cho’gath, Morgana, Lux, Elise, Thresh, Blitzcrank and Sona to name a few.
Some junglers and supports that I feel are not apt for this kind of gameplay are:
Nocturne, Lee Sin, Vi, Hecarim, Soraka, Shaco, Shen, Malphite, Udyr, to also name a few.
All interactions are potentially viable, but I feel that the second set of champions make coordination even harder, due to the lack of hard cc available at level 2.
Season 3 opens up new possibilities, and it’s up to us to find new and exciting gameplay that pushes the current meta to it’s very limits.