Stop Running it Down! A Guide on Dying Less in League of Legends



Sat 25th Jul 2020 - 2:00pm

Let’s be honest, we’ve all been the person that’s gone 0/10. Sometimes you had a bad day, but other times the enemy team is just too good. The jungler seems to always be there when you’re about to kill your laner or you get caught out for just putting a ward down. Next thing you know, the deaths stack up and you can’t do anything. You start wondering, is this game even winnable? How did I get into this situation? What could I have done better?

Let’s talk about some ways you could have prevented your deaths.

Look at the Minimap

I know that sounds silly, but a lot of people don’t look at minimap enough. Riot has it there for a reason! I guarantee that if you start looking at the minimap more, you'll see some improvement in your games. Sometimes you can't pan all the way across the map to see what's happening in top or mid, but the minimap can quickly tell you that information. You might catch the jungler creeping out of the fog of war very briefly. You can quickly inform your teammates and they can change how they're playing to accommodate this new information. Anything you know or any information you can gather can make all the difference in a game. If you're new to the game, it can be pretty difficult to look down there that quickly and often, but you'll soon find it to be second nature. Sometimes you can even tell what's happening between two champions based on how much their icons are moving on the minimap.

Don't forget that you can also change the size of the minimap in your settings. I tend to make it the smallest it can be to see more of my lane. Naturally, I'll miss out on some details, but in most cases, I can still make out the events occurring. However, it's ultimately up to you and how you want to view everything. If you're concerned about trading off lane visibility and minimap visibility, I'd recommend only making it a little bit smaller.

Don’t Underestimate the Enemy

The majority of the time, I know that we like to think we would dominate lanes or that the opponent is worse. However, that’s also a mentality that can get you killed. You become more susceptible to all kinds of mistakes and dangers. You've also increased their chances of winning. 

| “There is no greater danger than underestimating your opponent.” ― Lao Tzu |

This game is all about having advantages. If you start playing like you always have the advantage or play too aggressively, it's easier for the enemy to abuse your mistakes. The enemy laner might try to purposely bait you into pushing in or diving them. Their jungler or another laner could appear and kill you. You could lose the entire lane from just one mistake. However, while it's important to never underestimate your opponent, it's just as important to not overestimate them. Don't let them bully you in lane for free. You need to be able to trade efficiently or make the most of the lane. If you're losing lane, see if other laners can help you. 

Know Your Opponent

Don't blindly play the lane. You need to understand the win condition of your team and your role in it. If you're playing Maokai top, remember that you're building as the tanky frontline for your squishy backline. Focus on farming and building items to reach that tanky state. If you're a split pusher or bruiser, try to win lane any carry that advantage over to other lanes. However, this must also be thought about concerning your lane. Are they also playing a tank like Ornn? Do you need to play safer because they're playing a character such as Fizz or Tryndamere? If the jungler is camping you, consider that you might have to play safer to counter these ganks and waste the enemy's time. If you're able to make their jungler ineffective, that's another way for you to win the game.

Look at Numbers

Players often die because they make a very aggressive play, get caught out, and die. When going to ward or to an area with no vision, consider who is around you and where the enemy might be. If your team isn't around you, don't go out too far or ask your teammates to go with you. Don't let the enemy have the numerical advantage in a fight. If you try to catch someone out, punish the enemy for pushing out too far. This can easily make or break the game. Is that jungle pushing a lane out too far and seem to be alone? Kill them and your team has a higher chance of securing Baron Nashor. 

Learn to Build Adaptively 

Damage is extremely important in a game but it's just as important to build defensively. Sometimes you may need to build more defensively to win the game. For example, if they have a Syndra that ults you every team fight, you should consider building Zhonya's Hourglass or Guardian Angel to survive. It can give your team time to help peel for you and offer you another chance to turn the tides in a fight. If there's a Morderkaiser and you're a carry, you should highly consider Quicksilver Sash in order to get out of his ultimate.  

Is It Worth the Risk?

This is a question I ask myself before I make a lot of plays. If you die, would your team lose an important objective? Think before you act. Of course, sometimes you have to just play and there isn't time to think. However, getting into the habit of thinking about your plays will improve your win rate and decrease your deaths. Don't die for no reason. If you get caught out, try your best to waste Summoner Spells, ultimates, or time from the enemy team. Make sure to take calculated risks!

Everyone feeds and everyone can make mistakes. It happens and sometimes you just can’t do anything about it. Nobody is perfect, even the pros feed! Just remember that at the end of the day, League of Legends is a game.