Damwon Gaming became the first Korean team to win the 2020 League of Legends World Championship in three years. Despite Korea winning the majority of tournaments since the competition started back in 2011, global popularity continues to soar.
More than 3.7 million people tuning in made this year one of the biggest tournaments ever. Viewership was only slightly lower than 2019's 3.9 million.
More and more people continue to discover the esport but also find there are specific rules and standards that are hard to figure out just from watching. Here's a handy guide on the makeup of a professional League of Legends team.
A Quick League of Legends Explainer
League of Legends is a competitive, team-based video game available for free on both Mac and PC. Players are grouped into two teams of five, who then choose from about 138 champions, or characters, in the game.
Professional games are played on a map called Summoner's Rift.
Each team must complete objectives, power up, and destroy the other team's base, called the Nexus, to win. The Nexus is guarded by towers, or turrets, which need to be destroyed first.
Summoner's Rift is divided into three lanes, top, middle, and bottom. There are other turrets and buildings that need to be destroyed too. The Nexus releases minions, or bad guys that attack the other team. In order to win, teams have to annihilate an enemy's outer turret, inner turret, inhibitor turret, inhibitor, both Nexus towers, and then the Nexus itself.
The makeup of a League of Legends team
Now that we know how the game works, let's talk about teams.
There are five roles on each team:
- Top Laner
- Mid Laner
- AD Carry
Each role has a different objective and focus.
The top laner is also known as the solo lane player. It's a solitary position that often fights in 1v1 battles, unlike other positions on the map. The top laner's job is to keep the other team's more powerful champions busy and kill them as often as possible. They generally work alone for a while before joining the rest of the team.
This position is usually a team's star player. A mid laner is a mix of everything thanks to their position on the map. They can move around quickly to assist teammates and deal massive damage compared to other roles. It's a mid laner's job to kill lots of enemies using skills and abilities, like spells which require cool-down periods, rather more than auto-attacks.
AD Carry stands for Attack Damage Carry. This player usually stays in the bottom lane and is the other primary damage dealer on the team. They mainly auto-attack and take advantage of ranged moves to damage the other team from a safe distance. AD carry also needs more protection from the team than other players, and are weak early on. This is because an ADC is very item dependent, but fortunately, they scale up in a big way over the course of the match via equipment.
The support role plays backup for the ADC in the lower lane. Once the game gets rolling a bit and the ADC gains strength, the support can branch out and help other members of the team. While they don't do a lot of damage, they make up for it with abilities that assist teammates in a pinch. Supports can strategically place wards, buy oracles, time out abilities and cooldowns, and help control the flow of a game, among other abilities.
The jungler is the most versatile player in the game. Between all the lanes on the map, there are maze-like passages, called the jungle, divided by a river. There are little camps inside the jungle with monsters, and at the beginning of the game it's the jungler's role to kill them and gank.
Ganking is when a player will come into another lane to aid a teammate, turning a 1v1 confrontation into a 2v1. As the game continues, a jungler becomes a sort of jack of all trades. Junglers can protect teammates in trouble or join to deal more damage when needed. It's a special role that requires special skills.
This is the simplest way to describe a team, but remember that LOL is a complicated game with all kinds of nuances and subtleties, and it takes some time to understand what's going on. Happy hunting!
The LCK’s top seed, DAMWON Gaming, have beaten the LPL's third seed, Suning, in the 2020 League of Legends World Championship finals on Oct. 31 3-1, becoming the World Champions over a contested field.