When analyzing the League of Legends Championship Series, it’s easy to forget about the people who watch the LCS just for entertainment, maybe trying to learn a thing or two when seeing the pros play. Or maybe it’s that gold or silver player looking to get better but doesn’t know how.
That’s where I come in.
I want to be the analyst who represents the common player: the diamond guy on your friends list you can message who won’t give you a snarky response.. You know you’re not the next Faker, but you still want to improve and get to the next ranked division. I want to make sure you don’t fall through the cracks.
Here is the easiest thing to take away from the LCS when spectating: What champions are they using. The problem is that a lot of players might be picking champions not fully understanding why they were even picked in the first place. Anyone have mid Corki in some of your games last week? Yeah, Faker played it in the first professional game of 2016. I’m here to sort out the difference between power picks and niche picks. I will only talk about champions that were picked more than once during this week’s professional play.
Don’t Pick: Olaf
Besides being my personal favorite top lane champion, looking at the LCS should solidify that Fiora is the best top lane pick in the game. Even though Ryze had a 100 percent pick/ban rate across the four major regions, Fiora is a much better pick not only for professional play but also for solo/dynamic queue. Due to the fact that she doesn’t take time to get going and has high play-making potential, Fiora should be either picked or banned in every game.
Although Olaf is good against certain champions like Lissandra, that doesn’t mean you should play him now. Olaf is much more of a niche pick and used mainly as a lane counter. If he gets ahead, he’s one of the hardest champions to stop, but you shouldn’t be going into ranked play expecting to get overly fed every game. Pick Olaf when he is against high CC and has good support around him, like Lulu.
Pick: Elise and Rek’Sai
Dont Pick: Kindred
Elise and Rek’Sai are so good, they both deserved to be here. Although they do slightly different things, they both excel at what anyone would want a jungler to do: clear camps fast and gank well. Learning Elise might take a while, but Rek’Sai is pretty much the opposite. Just learn to land their hard CC abilities and you should be able to gank anyone.
If you watched all of the 2016 season so far, you should have seen the slow downward spiral of Kindred. Going into this new patch, Kindred was on everyone’s radar as a highly contested pick. After having many unsuccessful games, pro teams stopped picking them. She isn’t a bad champion by any means, but because of the fact she is a marksman in the jungle makes team fighting complicated, and the usage of their ultimate very tricky. If you aren’t a seasoned Kindred player, I suggest learning Elise and Rek’Sai, as they can fit into any team and be very impactful.
Don’t Pick: Anivia
The things Leblanc can do are pretty broken. Just watch Fabian “Febiven” Diepstraten play her against Origen. The champions that do well against her are hardly picked, and overall she just does well in any team comp. She also thrives in the current setting where a lot of people want to play support champions that excel with Frost Queen’s Claim, and like to build full damage. That means you should be able to have an easier time blowing up the enemy AD carry because those support champions have less protection. Oh and you should also one-shot the supports as well.
Anivia is a champion that has always been hard to carry games with. She brings a lot of utility and wave clear that is much harder to use in an uncoordinated environment than pure damage. I’d rather see other picks such as Twisted Fate or Lulu.
Don’t Pick: Janna
Alistar should be in every solo queue game. With Frost Queen’s Claim being all the rage, most lower level players totally look over Alistar and go for high-damage supports. There’s a reason that Alistar is picked and banned so much in pro play, and he has just as much play-making potential in solo queue. The more you play Alistar, the more you will love him. I guarantee it.
The reason you don’t want to play Janna is because of the fact that solo queue players love to pick high-damage supports. She is picked in the pro scene because of her mobility in lane swaps and great team fighting abilities. In solo queue, laning is so important, and I promise you, you will lose your lane to anyone that wants to build Frost Queen’s Claim. Beware of characters like Brand and Karma who will burst your shield and just do much more than you.
Don’t Pick: Miss Fortune
Shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who the best ADC in the game currently is. Lucian has so much play making ability combined with simply high early game power level, there really isn’t a reason not to pick Lucian.
Miss Fortune’s low mobility in team fights and the reliance on her ultimate is really limiting. Going into this season, I thought MF would be picked almost every game, but the nerfs she received last patch destroyed her popularity. (Her total presence in professional play on patch 5.24 was 89 percent, whichdropped drastically to 15 percent on patch 6.1. You are better off picking some of the other ADCs right now, such as Lucian or Ezreal.