As I rapidly approach my 100th game of League of Legends: Wild Rift, I look back on those first dozen or so games and can’t help but wish I had known a few things I didn’t realize until later. So, for any of you folks out there who have plans to check out Riot Games’ newest hit, here are six pointers for players new to League of Legends: Wild Rift.
There’s more to the game than laning
This one is here mostly to help dull the shock I received as I played my first game. I had finished Wild Rift’s tutorial and felt like I had a handle on the basics. I ended up falling into the Marksmen role, so I grabbed Miss Fortune, a favorite of mine from Legends of Runeterra, and dove into the game ready to push my lane, just as the tutorial described. Then, about five minutes into the game, the first tower fell. After that, everything spiraled out of control.
Suddenly characters were everywhere! Small 2v2 fights were breaking out in lanes where previously there had only been two characters total. Why was my support running off to mid? Didn’t they play the tutorial? Did they not know their roles?
As I soon discovered, this is the normal flow of games in League of Legends: Wild Rift. The more structured gameplay described in the tutorial is only the first portion of the game. It’s often referred to as the laning phase. And, in hindsight, it should’ve been obvious to me that the game in its entirety wouldn’t be comprised of it. How quickly the game changed, though, did surprise me. So I figured I’d give you a heads up.
Use the underappreciated source of knowledge: the death cam
Let’s face it; as a new player, you are going to be dying a lot. That’s ok. We’ve all been there. I’m pushing 100 matches, and I still die a lot in some games. But even in death, we can learn.
While you are waiting to respawn, your screen will bounce around the map, showing you what your living teammates are up to. Their icons will even appear in the center of the screen for you to select in case there is a particular person you want to watch. Once you’ve made your purchases, spend the rest of your time watching the other players. See what sort of abilities they use. How do they approach each other, or how do they break away when the fight is going bad? Much of this information cannot be applied to your character in a 1:1 way as every character plays differently. But it’s still good to get ideas and understand how those characters are used. And everyone will have something to teach you, even if it’s what not to do.
The truth about K/DA (no, not that K/DA)
While the Kill/Death Assist (K/DA) number is a useful metric to gauge how you are doing, never forget, it’s not the whole story. Those turrets you destroyed, the Dragons you’ve slain, the Rift herald you killed, or that time you were playing Sona and used your speed boost to extricate yourself and two teammates from a losing team fight? Yup, you guessed it. K/DA counts none of these important moments that occur in every game of Wild Rift. So try not to obsess or panic if your K/DA isn’t where you want it to be. First off, you’re new, so there’s the whole dying a lot thing I mentioned earlier. But, beyond that, it’ll never be the whole story.
Team comp and you
Team composition is an important part of any team game. And if you are like me, you don’t want to feel like the person who is throwing the composition out of whack because you picked a mage when your team needs a tank. It can be tough, but let’s face it, you will probably do your team better at this point playing the character you are halfway decent with than picking up someone you’ve never glanced at before. Just please, once you get your feet under you, try to fan out some. Try to get used to at least one character in each role so you can hold your own.
Don’t be afraid to ping
As a new player in League of Legends: Wild Rift, it can be intimidating to utilize the ping system to call something out. After all, if you were able to spot it, someone else must have, right? And if they did see it and not ping it, there must be no point in pinging. Right? Not necessarily. Games can get extremely hectic, and even the best players can only track so many things at once. If you think you see something worth calling attention to, ping it. Worst-case scenario, everyone ignores you. And as a bonus, you will build up the habit of utilizing the ping system, so when you do know what you are doing, it’ll already be second nature to you.
Checking the character screen, again
Let’s say before you picked your first main in League of Legends: Wild Rift, you did your due diligence and checked out their character screen to read up on all their abilities, as well as check out their default loadout. Maybe you even did some training with them. Now many games later, you continue to have mixed results. One moment you seem like a god of death, capable of slaying any poor mage that gets within striking distance of your sweet ability combo. The next moment, your getting stomped by the other team’s support. What happened? You activated your cooldowns in the same order. How did that squishy support weather your awesome attacks when heartier characters fall with ease? Maybe you’re forgetting something.
Can you say off the top of your head what your character’s passive power does? Or if any of the activated powers they possess has a passive perk that runs when the ability isn’t on cooldown? How about your runes? Can you say what those do? If you haven’t looked at your character page since you first chose them, the answer to most, if not all of these, is probably no. And that’s ok. As I’ve said repeatedly, Wild Rift has a lot going on. Go back and reread it. You’ll probably find a condition to one of your abilities that is only being met some of the time, thus causing your unpredictable power fluctuations.
And there you have it. I hope these six pointers will smooth out your time learning the ins and outs of the complex, challenging, and ultimately rewarding game League of Legends: Wild Rift. Good luck riding the Rift!