Support guide (Bronze/Silver edition)

Role of somebody who dedicates most of his gold (if not all) to his team is often unwanted. I would say this trend has a reason. In more than 50% games there, support is being left for last picks. Why? Support role is being completely misunderstood and therefore underrated.

I love supporting. As a support, your impact on the game can be higher than you thought. First big mistake that is made is that many low elo players tend to stick with the fact that support is meant to support AD carry. (Spoiler: it is not.) So, how to get good with support? Your main idea should be: “I am a support of my team.” MY TEAM. Yes, it simple as that. Sad thing is that even many AD carry players think you are there just for them and anytime you leave bottom lane to ward or roam, they overextend and die. Who to blame? “Of course, my support who just tried to make us feel safer! Let’s ignore the fact that I just suicided.” This way you can, as a newcomer support, experience a demoralizing situation which can extend the amount of time with your eyes covered.

What to do then? I think that previous article could help you in terms of creating your pool for support role. My pool is simple, yet full of high impact champions. To maximize your potential of snow-balling a game, pick a lane bully. Simple examples of them are Leona, Thresh or Blitzcrank. I swear that once you fully discover potential of picking a support that can roam and set kills for team, you will not even be mad if support is left for you. What I do not recommend is a support that has passive playstyle. You always want to have kill potential. Just because of the fact that you have four dummies in your team, playing versus five dummies. Then you are a witness of a team deathmatch game. If you pick lane bully, that will most likely not happen. You can read more about lane bullies and team comps in next article.

1. Damage

Now we have to define what exactly gives you killing potential. That one core thing is called DAMAGE. You, even as a support, want to have as much damage output as you can. It is not just damage what kills. Abilities which lock down enemies allow you and your team to deal even more damage! (Alert: This is team reliant as well. Pure damage is better.) By doing damage, you kill champions. Killing a champion means you obtain pressure on the lanes and can take objectives. This sets you in front of the enemy team and you can dig your way to the nexus (your ONLY goal in this game is nexus). According to this conclusion, let’s slowly progress into what you should play to climb with supports.

2. Summoner spells

IGNITE, baby. There is no other better summoner spell for you. Why? It does damage. Try to find any other summoner spell that gives you damage. There is not one. Others may offer you a way how to output more. I talk about flash or ghost. The problem about ghost is that it does not help you that well defensively and you cannot jump walls with it. So, from now on, your only two summs you want to use in your games are ignite/flash combination. Anything other in BRONZE/SILVER is garbage. You can ask: “But if they have hyper carry, I surely want to take exhaust to make sure he does not own us in lategame.” NOPE. You want to grow some balls and just destroy them even before enemy carry is able to build his three core items, because its damage output is sad until then. Exhaust is also something, that has synergy with your teammates and since theyre bad, you do not want to use it.

3. Trades

Another thing you want to focus on is chunking the enemy. If enemy carry goes for a lasthit, then it is your time to walk up and simply auto-attack him. This applies mostly for ranged supports. You do not want to be the sad guy focused by tons of creeps and two enemies after your one poor 60 base damage hit. If you are ranged, it is a complete other story. You can have serious impact on the lane this way. One auto-attack does 50 damage to an opponent. Well that is not a big deal, but do it ten times. You will realize that it hurts. Enemy carry and support will realize it too. But guess what? They are bronze or silver. Those guys are even thankful for the fact they know what their abilities do. Magnificent! This strategy is extremely useful at the early stage before first buy, because you surely are going to have four health pots. Opposing carry is going to have one. You can then take a lot of damage, because you have a lot more sustain and damage (in that one exact moment when he goes for CS) than enemy carry. The amount of pressure you gain this way is ridiculous.

4. Powerspikes

Powerspikes at lvl 2 are insane if you play lane bullies. If enemy does not realize your power spike, they are dead. At this elo, this is a yolo swag festival of target dummies. Help your lane partner to push the lane, communicate with him and set up an easy kill early. Do not walk up to enemies straight before level two. You have to do it sneaky and the transition into their territory and range has to be smooth. This is by far the most notable powerspike in LoL ever. There are many other powerspikes and apart from lvl 2 powerspikes, they are much more dependant on your AD carry pick. You can learn other spikes via reading pro guides.

5. NO to invades.

In early games, avoid any invades. You have basically zero synergy with your team, so just sit in your lane and if team decides to go and die in the enemy jungle, you can wave at them from the comfort zone of your turret. There is a chance you can win game via early play but if anything goes wrong, you can lose instantly.

6. All-ins

Chunking the enemy helps you with trades and all-ins. If enemy carry has 60% health and yours has 80-100%, you can most probably all-in them right away. The best way how to find out is to just keep trying until you calibrate your sense for all – ins. There are tons of possible matchups and by simply playing them over and over, you grow. Anyway, you need to be able to do damage. Now we are back at comparing passive supports and lane bullies. Imagine you would pick Soraka. She is absolutely useless (no damage) for you in terms of solo queue. I am not saying Soraka is a bad champion. She actually has her place in LoL, otherwise she would not even be there, right? She is just useless for you at this elo. Even if you duo with somebody in silver (you can rely on him then), just pick those snowball champions who win you game in a few minutes rather than scaling into lategame. Remember that there are still three other people on your team who are at this elo.

7. Sighstone is a MUST.

About itemization: Buy sightstone and mobility boots as soon as possible. If there was only one item slot available for champions, it would be filled with sighstone (in my case). You have so much information from wards. They protect you from getting cheesed, track enemy movement and give you vision for your sneaky plays. It gives you many opportunities how to help whole team, not just your lane. After you have mobis and vision, you build according to what champion you play.

For more in-depth builds I recommend searching guides by high elo players. They basically show you all the possible ways how you can build a certain champion. You should always take in mind that by reading a champion guide, it is still that person’s subjective point of view. To make it more objective, you can read more guides and make some small modifications by yourself.

8. Roaming

Being a support does not mean to stick to the bottom lane only. If you play a lane bully, you can gank too. Enemies at lower elos do not buy wards that often, so they are free kills waiting just for you. An ideal moment to roam and gank midlane is after you push botlane or even kill there (in case you still have enough HP and mana to do something elsewhere). Simply walk up to mid and communicate. Tell your midlaner that you are coming and spam target with two or three pings, so you make sure he notices. Wait for the ideal moment when enemy walks up for the trade and then show up, lock him down and just murder him. When you go to other lane in terms of ganking, you can put a ward down for your teammate, so you make him a little bit safer. You should be checking minimap by every five seconds so you can actually get that value from warding. You will see what others cannot (even people in your team are bad, yes) and you will be able to warn them.

Roam to toplane is a little harder, because it is on the other side of the map. I usually go toplane after me and carry push bot and only if I have mobis. They give you insane travelling speed and if you back off from botlane, enemy toplaner  will not expect you there. If you land a hook or any lockdown, he is probably dead. Then you can make your trip down to the bottom to rejoin your carry and try ganking midlane once more on your way.

Roaming is fun, roaming is fine. However, you should watch your time you spend roaming. Do not sit those lanes that much, because by leaving bottom, you allow your enemy to pressure your adc and turret. If you decide to roam at a bad time, it can turn into a disaster. You could lose your adc, bottom turret and your roam does not even have to work out at that time. So if your lane is not pushed into enemy turret, it is better to stay botlane. This does not apply for those games, where you have a feeling your carry is probably a sick ape which suffers from blindness and immobility. If you find out your carry is totally useless, there is no reason why to be there with him watching him dying. Instead, maximize your roaming and try to snowball other lanes. Double ganks with your jungler always hurt and if they are executed properly, you will burn flash or kill enemy  and obtain the pressure your team desperately needs. I HIGHLY recommend to mute your carry at those times, because the blame on you is going to be heavy as metal from 90s.

9. Denying vision

Sad news is that even bad enemies can ward. This is where you shine, because from now on, you will switch to red trinket IMMEDIATELY after you buy sighstone. This allows you to clear enemy wards and continue being obnoxious. Pinks do the same plus grant you vision of a certain bush. In some cases, when you walk up to a lane to gank it, enemy can be so overextending you do not care if he has vision or not, because he is dead anyway.

So now you should understand the main thing behind supporting in lower elos.

Now last, but not least. Be aggressive. Whenever you feel like you see an opportunity, go for it and go for it hard. Having a lane bully does not necessarily mean that you bully your opponent. If you fail, never mind. You have to be hungy. Do you want to flash-hook somebody? Do not be afraid of it, just try it. The worst outcome of that can be that you will get flamed. Well, you already get a lot of salt probably. It is no secret that enterprising people get the most of anything they try. On the other hand, dull people are the exact opposite. Do not be dull, because dull people never had much. Focus at yourself and try to push yourself to the limits. I swear that once you are able to calibrate your plays, you will be a monster. This applies to anything. Never regret of something you have done. Your mindset from now on should be regretting what you were scared of to do.

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