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April 16, 2015 / realelohell

MOBA Mania.

It’s been 3 years since I’ve posted anything on here, and in that time, things sure have changed.

League is bigger than ever, DOTA2 is growing rapidly, and even Blizzard has finally hopped on the bandwagon with Heroes of the Storm. And I’m not even going to bother mentioning all the other clones and knockoffs of the “Dota” style genre that haven’t been as successful.

However, some things will always stay the same. Globally, there are over 9 million people in Bronze, Silver and Gold now (http://www.lolsummoners.com/ladders/all), that’s an absolutely insane amount of people playing ranked games (still probably only a small fraction of the total global players of LoL), and yet, people still have trouble moving up the ladder despite all the dilution in skill (there are over 800k players ranked in plat these days – a far cry from the 50~ or so in Season 1). 90% of people are in the lowest 3 skill brackets, and I don’t doubt that this bell curve is the same in any MOBA with a ranking system.

Unfortunately for players of these games, the same age old impediments to improvement will always persist:

lol

1) Too much noise – Just like in real life, with the internet there is just too much bullshit out there and it’s too hard to separate good information from bad information. And because of the glut of garbage out there good information (which is comparatively somewhat rare) ends up sounding the same.

If you’ve searched the internet at all for tips and tricks, nuggets of information on how to get better, read any “I used to be Y rating, now I’m Z rating” posts, they all end up sounding the same. That’s because good advice has to be general enough to apply in almost any case. Just like if you had $0 in savings and asked for financial advice, most of the replies would end up being “save some money”.

Additionally, any true insights rapidly become obsolete as the metagame shifts or patches occur.

2) “Victory has a thousand fathers, but defeat is an orphan.”

In team games, people always blame outwards. This will never change no matter what – show me a team game and I’ll show you a bunch of people who caused the loss other than me.

Which brings us to…

3) Too much stagnation

It’s okay to play a game just for fun, to play a game and never improve. However – if you start raging or complaining about anything other than yourself, that’s when it doesn’t stay okay.

I haven’t played League of Legends seriously since the first couple months of season 3 and I’m probably terrible now. But there is no doubt in my mind that (assuming I had the time to play) if I could be bothered to play seriously again, there is simply no way in hell that I would stay terrible for very long. Stagnation is okay if your primary motivation is having fun, but no one who is looking to get better should be satisfied with it.

At this point if you’re asking yourself “That’s all well and good, but how do I really improve at X/Y/Z (insert LoL/Dota2/Heroes of the Storm/whatever) MOBA?” then you’re on the right track.

Unfortunately, the track is long and winding and steep. There aren’t really any shortcuts and there will be a lot of pitfalls. But as long as you’re constantly questioning yourself, whether you’re playing a game or searching out information, you’ll be better off than the other 90% out there.

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