Recently in a thread regarding incoming buffs for Annie, Riot’s Morello made a statement that has caused a little commotion. It was a simple one liner in response to a player’s confusion over Annie’s need for a buff.
“Well, at your ELO, Annie’s really good.” – Morello
I think the fact that this statement ruffled some feathers sheds some light on the disposition of the community. Why must all ELO’s be equal, so to say? All players are certainly not of the same skill level or experience – and the reasons why are largely irrelevant. Annie does not zone or counter jungle as well as much of her competition in the current meta. She does not escape, or sustain as well either. Does she blow stuff up quick? Hell yeah. Is that enough at all levels of play? No. Obiously this is a gross simplification, but the actual balance of the champions is a side note of this article. What I want to look at is the attitude towards ELO.
I agree with Morello here 100%. Less effective ganking means less escape-able champions can thrive more effectively. One that same note, one could say that less map awareness leads to easier ganking – so Annie is worse in lower ELO. The important thing to note here is that in high level play, all concepts of the game being taken into account correctly is assumed – but at lower ELO it is not. Annie in the hands of a player with decent map awareness and a few wards may be able to easily avoid the obvious gank routes of players who are used to getting kills walking straight past dragon to your lane. They aren’t used to wards there – or even if there are wards people don’t often see them walk by them, or do and still die anyway by misjudging their champion or yours. It’s a different playing field in many respects and that changes the effectiveness of champions used.
So, why so offended? Must we all play like the pros or be insulted? I think one of the biggest setbacks a player can make when attempting to climb the ELO ladder is mocking the pros in too much. Personal experience and learning your own style of play will trump mimicking someone else’s choices every time. The game is dynamic and your decisions must be too – they come at moment’s notice and M5/CLG won’t be there during your lane phase to hold your hand. US servers stick hard to their meta until someone shatters it – and when that happens all the innovators that were put down get no apologies. Try what works at your ELO and try what works for YOU!