Join me as I learn to play League of Legends, going from scrub to champion during the month of December.
Entry 1: Head Toward the Light!
In the alternate world of Runeterra, any and all political conflict would be settled by arena battle. Summoners of a particular political allegiance would enter the Fields of Justice, and your objective would be to destroy the opposing faction nexus by summoning forth a champion in hopes of leading your followers to victory!
Flash-forward to me, sitting at my computer desk staring longingly at the front page of TwitchTV to see League of Legends yet again being spotlighted.
"I just don't get it," I can remember thinking to myself, not out of disdain but out of frustration. A few weeks ago I had tried to play League of Legends, but it simply failed to click. Perhaps it was the lack of companionship, or possibly the overabundance of scare tactics surrounding the game. Whatever it was, I just simply was not getting it, but I decided that this needed to change.
My experience with real-time strategy games was limited; actually, it was nonexistent. I was aware of the stereotypes that surrounded the popular genre, and even that information was sketchy at best. So I was curious--curious about what awaited me, curious about what I would experience, curious about how I would be at the game, curiouser and curiouser.
So much to choose from…it can make a newb dizzy.
With that, I decided to jump in, and what I found was terrifying. A vast swarm of information presented by hundreds of differing voices all interpreting in a unique and enigmatic fashion. I had no idea whom to listen to or where to even start. I began to question what I had gotten myself into, and ultimately I began to debate if going down this rabbit hole would even be worth it. I sat there, staring at a game with over 12 million players, feeling alone, confused, and intimidated. As fast as I could blink, I tossed the keyboard aside, giving into my fear of the unknown, practically cowering back into my version of familiarity and comfort. But curiosity has a way of returning.
Deep into the darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing…
How it came back I have no idea. But after weeks of inactivity I decided that I wanted to try again. This time I was feeling less afraid. I had already peered into the great mass of distorted, befuddling madness known as League of Legends, and this time I would not let it get the better of me.
We decided to have a League of Legends Holiday Parade. During this time we would have contests, activities, trivia, and giveaways. We would also have our scrub sessions, featuring me learning to play alongside Jody Robinson. Jody had a bit of experience with the game, though she was by no means an expert, but it was still extremely comforting to have her alongside me. The day we did our first Scrub Play I was horribly nervous. "They're all gonna laugh at you!" I could hear ringing in my ears. I could practically see the barrage of chatroom trolls lining up to take a swing at my confidence as a new player. What actually happened, however, was quite surprising.
I was really shocked when this didn't happen.
"They like you!" I can remember Jody telling me. At first I thought she was just trying to make me feel better and that what was actually being said would cause me to pull the plug on the Internet, but she was telling the truth! I mean sure, there were a few trolls (which is to be expected), and there were a few users who were unaware that the stream was of me playing with and against bots and therefore got upset. However, the majority of the people in the stream were incredibly helpful and encouraging.
When the stream was over and I went to my League of Legends profile, I had dozens of friend invites followed by messages telling me things like "Not bad for a newb" and "If you're looking for help, I'm always glad to help a new player." I was surprised by this community's willingness to be helpful, their acceptance of my "noobish nature," and their resourcefulness when it came to any question I had. I haven't gotten a "Google it" response from a single player.
So here I am, about to do my second Scrub Play with Jody as my co-host. I've had a lot of really awesome people help me so far with learning to play this game. So here are some of my Summoner shout-outs: BenderUnit22, Headless Nun, Serevino, Bozanimal, Calithrae, CutieMae, DeathPlushie, GarKitty, Grona, Judisius, LightEffect, MannerRev, Masked, Neromos, SirSpudly, Sivian, TheRaven, TheRoadstar, TheRogue, Toysoldier, and xXGreen0120Xx.
I'll be doing one more Scrub stream on December 31, along with multiple play dates and a League of Legends Marathon on December 18. Feel free to add my Summoner "Lady Varaska" if you want to share some advice, play with someone around your skill level, or just hang out with your friendly neighborhood community manager. My next blog will be a bit about stats, character builds, and my rankings so far as an LOL player.
Keep it up, Synthia. Btw, I wrote a little blog elaborating on a few starting tips, if you'd like a more in-depth explanation for why certain things are important. Might do some more in the future (especially warding, which even long-time players often neglect)
@Synthia@BenderUnit22 Sigh, it's such a waste, guys. I tried out LOL just a day or so ago (after Synthia & Jody's 2nd stream encouraged me to do so). If only I'd read your blog/article then (both of you,Bender & Synthia). Your introductory paragraph was so true. The first thing that hit me goin in was the toxicity of LOL's community. I mean, look, I'm a long-time FPS/TPS, RTS, ORPG, etc. veteran. In fact, the only subgenre I'm not into is MOBA. Being a bit of a "graphics aficionado" (ya,I know I'm vain,LOL), the one visual thing that caught me was LOL's painterly art. Almost like the covers or splash pages for comic books.
So rest assured that this isn't exactly my first outing with hostile trash-talkin "pat-trolling" players, but jeez, the amount of snooty self-important players here is almost amazing! And to think that, the worst offender of them all... wasn't even a guy! No, seriously. I'm actually considering reporting her (DK how though,LOL). Finding a queen B* in-game is an absolute personal first for me! I mean, if she looks down so much on just-learning players, then what the hell was she doin in a beginner co-op game in the first place, right?! Preying on younger players just so you can feel great about yourself? Pathetic much. I guess it's true what they say, men don't have a monopoly on d-bagness.
PS: BTW, about the "S" key, I actually discovered that function by accident, LOL. With my tactical shooter background, I panicked and tried to backpedal my character, hahah!
@JodyR@Synthia@BenderUnit22 Yeah... I guess you're right, Jody. It IS better with people you know, or strangers who are nice. Okay then, I'll give it another shot with you good folks later. I'll add ya and see ya guys in-game. IGN's "CaL4m17y".