Analyzing the current meta: the double jungle roaming support meta.

by Dr_Kasper on Feb 23rd, 2013 (1525 days ago)

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:

 

Jungle Camp

Gold

Exp

 Ancient Golem

66

221

 Big Golem

55

137

 Giant Wolf

55

153

 Golem

15

38

 Lesser Wraith

3 x 3 = 9

4 x 3 = 12

 Lizard Elder

66

221

 Wolf

4 x 2 =8

10 x 2 = 20

 Wraith

30

103

 Young Lizard

5 x 4 = 20

40 x 4= 160

Total

324

1065

 

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.

Analyzing the Current Meta: Unrealistic Expectations

by Dr_Kasper on Aug 11th, 2012 (1720 days ago)

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With unrealistic expectations comes frustration and anger, issues that bear heavily on daily LOL play.

League of Legends is a MOBA (multiplayer online battle arena), nothing new there. It is a game that relies on team play in order to achieve maximum effectiveness. It takes teams’ weeks, nay, months to get accustomed to different member’s play style, mechanics, attitudes, etc.

Mastering a certain champion/role takes time, lots of it. Professional players spend years mastering champions to the point that they understand the intricacies of them, the position they play, and of the game.

With the recent boom of streaming, new players are now exposed to high level league of legends play. They get to see whomever, utilize a certain champion that has taken them time to master; whose mechanics have taken them time to get down to a science; and unfortunately this causes two things in our newer player base:

 

1)      The belief that mimicking the streamer will wield them equally successful results

2)      The belief that a certain champion is “OP”, because a streamer facerolled their opponents with them

 

Are newer players being set up to fail?

As an older player, I learned to play the game not by watching other people play it, but by diving into normal games and playing my heart out. I had no idea what the meta was, what champions were considered “OP”, and with no real expectations as to what my “team comp” or “champion” was supposed to accomplish.

Newer players come into the game with more information than we did. With the ability to watch high level matches, and what can happen when a team of 5 players come together as a cohesive unit and achieve maximum synergy. This is akin to me joining a sport, watching a professional team, and therefore expecting that replicating the actions of the players, will yield me the same results (i.e. my TEAM will win). The team play aspect is ignored, and instead there is focus on the individual’s skill in the game; coupled with the belief that if YOU are good enough, you can carry your team to victory. (You can, but 9/10 you won’t)

Not saying that having more information is bad, I’m stating that mimicking expecting equal results is unrealistic. And that there is more merit in learning your OWN play style, and choosing a champion that best conforms to that play style; instead of miming another person’s style, and therefore champion selection.

This will stall the evolution of the league of legends meta game, as newer players will be less inclined to deviate from the standard due to the mimicry that occurs on a daily basis, and the lack of evolving creativity that comes with it.

Top Tier Opinions: Discussion on the current meta and where it’s going!

by MasteR of LoL on Jan 25th, 2012 (1919 days ago)

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Hey guys, MasteR of LoL here, and I’d like to make a rather detailed post about my thoughts on the current meta and a bit of advice for teams trying to get into competitive play.

First of all, the current meta is having Tanky bruiser/tanky ap top, ap mid, ranged AD + support bottom, and a jungler (of course there’s some slight variation). The Europeans were the first to start doing this, with NA following shortly after. The first major tournament this was done at was Dreamhack. Personally, I believe EU won this tournament, since NA conceded to their meta (thinking it was better).

Recently you may have noticed Goose (Atlanta’s team), who qualified for Kiev(correct me if I’m wrong), running Jarvan + Leona bot lane and other variants. Another interesting thing was Rock Solid (now Dignitas) running katarina in competitive games (and beating CLG in whatever qualifier it was). This is kind of where I’m going with this post… so without further delay, here’s what I think of the meta:

I think that the current meta isn’t optimal and that there are way better team comps that can be ran to counter this meta specifically. You may have heard Dyrus talking about things similar to what I’m going to talk about.

Bot lane is the easiest lane to cheese (as seen by Goose). Run double tanky dps (singed + taric, blitz + taric, j4 + leona, j4 + LS, etc etc) and you will destroy ranged ad + support (the reason being, both champions deal dmg, whereas in support + ad, most of the dmg is done by the ad, focus the ad carry and the support can’t deal anywhere near enough dps to keep you off, and the ad carry can’t fight or they will die). Next let’s go to mid. The main reason the current meta was popular was due to the belief that AP destroys AD mid, which isn’t necessarily true. Take any ad with a strong early game (MF, graves, vayne, corki, whatever) and you’ll destroy AP carries mid (AD win early game, when the AP caster has few spells, AP win later, specifically after 6 in most cases, so win hard enough early game for it to not matter post 6, problem solved). Another thing with AP vs AD is AP’s usually take ignite, whereas AD’s generally take exhaust. Exhaust>Ignite in fights that last a decent amount of time and both players are in attacking range. I’ve tried it a bunch with MF previously (as has Dyrus), and it works. If they decide to go for the kill, exhaust before their burst, and just auto attack them down. The same concept applies to ranged AD carries in the top lane. They win early due to a range advantage and lose later. The jungle, well, not much to talk about there. It’s moving towards mobile junglers with fast clearing abilities and strong abilities to counter jungle (usually AoE spells, such as shyv, udyr, noc, LS, etc etc).

To sum up the last paragraph, I expect to see the meta shift towards something like this: Either Tanky AP top (rumble, kennen-ish, maybe ryze, or a few others), Ranged AD Mid, dual bruiser bot, good early/mid game jungler (possibly with teleport) OR Ranged AD top, AP mid, dual bruisers bot, same type of jungler. Another interesting thing is support champions. I think they’d most likely fit into the jungle/ap mid role. Maybe something like: AP janna mid, ranged ad top, dual bruisers bot, jungler with more magic dmg (to compensate for Janna’s lack of burst, such as fiddle, cho, malphite, karthus, etc).

I’m actually quite surprised something of this nature hasn’t already occurred in big tournaments. My guess would be people are afraid to try new things large scale and don’t want to be humiliated, especially when everyone else is using the current meta, so it’s just a safer option not to do anything extreme.

As far as my advice goes… I’d suggest people (especially those trying to get into competitive play) to try new things that may seem unusual or odd. League of Legends has a variety of options (91 champions, 14 summoner spells, 3 different mastery trees encompassing 30 points, and a large number of runes).

As for the meta changing, it changes because some pro players (or teams) do something new that is successful, then the masses follow. But why be part of the masses, when you can be the reason the meta changes? That’s what separates professionals, from everyone else. For example, TSM running double/triple lantern at whatever tournament. For the next 3 weeks all I saw was everyone playing an AD carry going lantern and claiming TSM did it, so it’s good. That’s another issue with professional teams doing things. They do things in certain situations for specific reasons and that’s why it works, going lantern every game on AD isn’t a wise choice, then again nor is never buying a lantern.

This brings me to my last point I want to make: Items. If you’ve noticed, very few people buy mid tier items (brutalizer, lantern, tiamat, etc). However, I think mid tier items are going to come into play soon, especially with comps that are designed to win early game, where there is no point in attempting to go for something like an IE. The main reason mid tier items aren’t popular, is because if you don’t do something aggressive with them, they’re not worth it, and in the long run will make you lose the game, however, if you use them correctly and it fits with your team comp, then it would be worth it.

That’s all I can think of now. If you have any questions, ask away! If you’re confused about anything or want more insight, that is also welcome. Also, feel free to add your own suggestions of the meta, and I can comment on that too (maybe debate about it, in a constructive way).