Ah, can you smell it? The season is changing, preseason is in the air and all you can think about is finishing that grind to Gold. Well not to remind you, but, the clock is ticking.
Every year, someone I know goes on the quest to Gold. “Holy shit, we only have two weeks left. If I don’t get that skin, I’ll die.” Well, this year it’s me. Around this time of year, ranked gets notoriously bad. Certainly worse than usual, which I don’t say lightly as someone who really doesn’t care much for ranked.
Everyone’s goal is simple. “All I have to do is get to Gold and then I can quit forever.” But that’s underselling the experience isn’t it? Because it isn’t just people who were Gold and just haven’t played ranked much this year (me), it’s people who’ve never been Gold, trying their best, and worst of all, it’s people who want to watch the hopes and dreams of other burn.
Yes, the trolls come out in full force in late October. As if it wasn’t bad enough having the ex-Gold player yell about how you’re holding them back or the forever-Silver-V player lying to you about how they have gotten stuck at Silver I with 99 LP every year, there is always that one troll. The one that comes there to break you. To take your hope in humanity and crush it.
Why? Because they know everyone is here to try hard. Everyone wants to win. Crushing the dreams of one person in their series isn’t enough for them anymore. If they can’t burn down an entire team’s desires, what’s even the point? I’m being dramatic, but I’ve also written about my own experience with demons a few times.
Anyway, we aren’t here to talk about trolls.
We’re here to talk about ranked being so hard right now. If you’re reading this, I would like to request one thing of you: be kind to each other. That sounds either stupid or obvious — depending on what kind of person you are — but I’m serious. Players are tense. Not only are people fueled with anxiety over losing LP, they’re terrified that they may never get that sweet, savory Graves skin.
In my experience, playing ball with your teammates is the best way to go during this time. If someone gets a kill, type a “gj.” If you get a gank or someone comes to support you, shoot them a quick “ty.” Triple Kill? “Nice!” Be enthusiastic, show you want to win by being nice and not by yelling at people. It lightens the mood and sets players at ease. If you get a troll that’s annoyed with your kindness, step it back a little but don’t give up. If they’re angry enough to throw a game because you’re typing “nice play,” they were gonna do it anyway.
League of Legends is a video game, and sometimes it can even be a fun one. The end of October is not one of those times. Nobody wants to be there. Everyone is climbing because they want that damn skin (PLEASE, COME ON RIOT I LOVE GRAVES, WHY DID YOU HAVE TO PICK THIS SEASON). Be nice and go out of your way to compliment people. Lift them up and if something goes bad, shut your mouth. The sincerity of your compliment doesn’t matter, but it may help ease someone’s anxiety about loss, paving their way to victory.
My mother — well, and Thumper the rabbit from Bambi — used to tell me “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all.” Nothing has ever proven this statement more true than end-of-season League of Legends.