Changing things up in our current meta, will only lead the game to evolve beyond our wildest dreams.
There are very distinct differences between gameplay styles in our current meta. I won’t go into the history of it, but mostly the consensus is that the NA adopted the EU’s support + AD carry in bot lane. M5 introduced the counter jungling gameplay, which forced professional teams to evolve in order to counter these newtactics, and NA adopted it as well.
After watching multiple games from the Asian servers, one can safely conclude that the current meta may be close to experiencing a shift once again. Korean players have adopted an aggressive lane pushing strategy, which places extreme pressure on the opposing team’s lane, forcing them back. The ganks come early and often, and towers are demolished without hesitance.
This strategy forces some things upon the enemy team, such as:
1) The most obvious being gaining map control, thus eliminating vision and walking paths from your opponents.
2) Controlling their jungle. All of a sudden, the enemy jungler has to start worrying about jungle invades (Sure this is countered by warding, but if you are already behind in gold and are being pressured, the tendency is to not do this efficiently)
3) Having to buy GP10 items to catch up in gold, BUT even though GP items offer good stats and generate gold over time, they are not a good counter to an aggressive push strategy (due to demolishing towers early, and thus gaining control of dragon, items that are bought are more geared towards pushing advantages, not for late game)
4) Play catch up for the rest of the game, take more risks, and get away from established gameplans.
5) You can’t push lanes as effectively, due to the fact that 1, 2 or 3 of your lanes have been pushed all the way to base. Thus, if you take the time to push a tier 1 or 2 tower, you might just lose an inhibitor in the process.
Of course this gamestyle focuses on taking an early advantage and snowballing with it. Like any other strategy it can be countered (much like counterjungling) but it takes an extraordinary amount of teamwork to achieve, something that solo queue lacks at times.
I would not be surprised if the “aggressive lane pushing” strategy becomes more prevalent in ranked games. It is already practiced to some extent in normal games, and definitely used more at lower levels. What really gets me excited is that this strategy opens up the opportunity for different champions to be utilized.
For this strategy one would ideally need:
1) A powerful AD carry that build bloodthirster early in order to push down towers effectively (skipping doran’s blades)
2) An insta-wave clearing champ
3) A jungler that can gank both early, and often.
I’m not going to delve deep into the all the necessities of the strategy, but I will say that it’s a high risk/high reward strategy that puts the opponent on their heels from the very beginning, and having your opponent be second guessing their every move and/or putting out of their comfort zone is all the advantage one may need.