Saturday, September 14, 2013

My Worlds Power Rankings

Worlds Power Rankings

It's time! Tomorrow begins the League of Legends Season 3 World Championships! These are my power rankings and predictions for group stage records (at the bottom). Everyone enjoy watching worlds and maybe I'll see you in Los Angeles.

I'm not gonna slow-roll you and put this in reverse order to make you read it.

1) SK Telecom T1
                For my money, Faker is the best player on the planet at the moment in competitive League of Legends. He won the Korean MVP vote against some of the other "best in position" players in the world (see Madlife, Dandy, Maknoon, etc) and has been displaying incredible versatility throughout the last two seasons in OGN with a variety of champions and playstyles. Combine that with the seemingly endless improvement of duo lane Piglet and PoohManDu, a consistent jungler in Bengi who boasts a well rounded champion pool and understands the whole "pressure" meta of jungle right now (much like Meteos and Dandy), and Impact as the glue that holds it all together playing whatever his team needs out of the top lane, you get a team that's primed for the performance of their life. I also happen to like the fact that they didn't get a bye. In my opinion the teams that have to play in the group stages will actually have the advantage of being under the spotlight and get comfortable. To me, this will trump any strategic advantage the other teams can brew up in that time frame. SK Telecom T1 has lost ONE BEST OF FIVE in two full OGN seasons. Up until about halfway through this season they were more or less "playing solo queue" or just picking whatever champions they want and just beating top notch teams with their raw ability (much like Alternate was doing early in the EU LCS except this is in OGN!!). It's frightening that they have only just started to really synergize and strategize in the last half of OGN Summer. The strength of roster and inability to really be "banned out" individually will create matchup nightmares all over the place against all but only the very best teams (Ozone, Royal, OMG). SK Telecom T1 are peaking at the perfect time and I'd be lying if I told you "(team) could definitely beat them." The combination of these factors make them my pick to win Worlds in 2013 with absolutely no reservations.

2) Samsung Ozone
                To many people, Imp and Mata are the best duo lane combination in the world currently and, truthfully, it's difficult to argue with results. They've played all season against the likes of Pray/Madlife, Piglet/Pooh, Score/Mafa, and other premier duo lanes with great success. I consider Dade the second best mid laner in Korea currently with his red hot performances throughout the OGN Summer season and playoffs. Dandy nearly won the MVP in Korea with his stellar jungle play on Elise and Lee Sin who will warrant bans from enemy teams for sure. Homme is a bit of a wild card for enemy teams with champions such as Yorick and Mundo in his arsenal as well as your standard top laners. Ozone is has the ability to win this whole tournament and if it wasn't for the existence of SKT1 they'd be my top pick.

3) OMG
                China is still and underrated region for professional league play. Everyone always talks about the Korean scene and the EU and NA LCS but the Chinese LPL is right there with OGN in competitive quality with teams like World Elite, Invictus Gaming, Positive Energy, and of course, your spring split winners and summer runners up OMG. Cool is likely the best mid laner in China with a stellar performance throughout OMG's incredible 17-4 (81% win rate) Summer season. While I haven't personally watched a ton of LPL action, I did watch most of the end of the season and the playoffs and the trio of LoveLin (jungle), Cool (mid) and GoGoing (top) is the best in China at their respective roles (PDD vs GoGoing is debatable I guess). They play a high pressure, hyper aggressive style that is along the lines of KT Rolster B in Korea which will give them an edge against the Korean teams and the ability to catch the European teams off guard and I believe they're more individually talented than any of the NA teams going to worlds. OMG is another case of peaking at the right time. They're red hot coming off their impressive Spring split and absolutely insane Summer split in LPL action. Their playstyle is extraordinarily difficult to learn to deal with in a short amount of time which will give them a big advantage. I wouldn't be surprised to see them in the finals.

4) Royal Club
                Another mainstay from the Chinese scene. Royal Club have arguably been the best, and most consistent Chinese team since World Elite was on top of the entire League of Legends scene. They'll be looking to ride the momentum from their recent Regional finals victory over OMG into worlds. Uzi, while controversial for his temper, is one considered by many to be the best AD carry in China, better than WeiXiao (World Elite's AD) and on a level, if not better than Doublelift. For us Westerners, Royal Club typically plays a lot of "protect the AD" in a style similar to the one CLG became famous for doing around Doublelift but with a lot more aggressive jungle and mid tendencies to buy time to Uzi to build in power. Don't forget about Tabe's support Annie either! The combination of the consistent strength of opponents (such as WE, OMG, IG) and their aggressive playstyle will provide a sizeable advantage against the international stage. It's worth noting that this will be the swan song of two members of Royal so they will be looking to retire on top.

5) Cloud 9
                To me, Cloud 9 have the potential to be a world class team, but they've yet to prove it and they do not have the individual ability that teams like OMG, SKT1, Ozone, and others have to warrant a higher placement than this for me. Perhaps their strongest characteristic as a team is the ability to turn the first disadvantage they encounter in a game into a complete change of pace or direction in the game which will be more difficult against better opponents. The only games Cloud 9 lost were games in which they lost a lane by a significant margin which could happen much more often against world class players. It's going to be interesting to see how Cloud 9 responds when playing against teams that are "better" than they are. With all of this in mind, this is still Cloud 9. They show elite levels of coordination and excellent team synergy as well as the strongest control of game tempo in the West which will give them an advantage against all but the best teams in the world. The only question is whether or not they can handle their first taste of the international scene and, more importantly, the world class individual talent.

6) Fnatic
                I originally had Gambit here because they always seem to show up when it matters but then I thought about it some more and realized just how consistent Fnatic is. They've played on the world stage many times, stuck it out through a long, competitive EU LCS season, and had their best performances during the Summer split playoffs, when it matters. They'll be looking to ride the momentum from the Summer into worlds. With the world class play of Soaz and Cyanide, the only potential weakness I see in Fnatic is that xPeke could be outclassed by the insane amount of talent in the mid lane that is going to world or that teams could choose to completely shut down Soaz. However, that is only against the strongest of teams and to me, Fnatic's combination of experience and excellent teamplay will give them the edge against almost everybody else in the pool. To me, this ranking is respect to consistency. A low ceiling, high floor sort of situation.           

7) Vulcun Techbargains
                Vulcun was perhaps the most difficult team for me to rate. They possess a large overall champion pool and a variety of team compositions and playstyles but to me, this isn't what makes them such a strong pick. Vulcun have a knack for dictating the pace of a game. Whether it's slowing the game down to get Zuna farmed up, or a hyper aggressive, high pressure game, or somewhere in between, Vulcun always seems to be able to play the game they want to play. Xmithie doesn't get enough credit with Meteos running wild on NA LCS but his jungle style reminds me a lot of Dandy and Kakao from Korea with his understanding of pressure instead of tunnel visioning on ganks. MandatoryCloud is a world class mid laner that, in my opinion, should have been the NA representative at all stars. Zuna and Bloodwater (also a highly underrated player) are going to prove a difficult lane to deal with for teams that aren't used to facing them with their highly aggressive, kill seeking out of the bot lane. Vulcun's potential downfall will be similar to that of Cloud 9's. It's difficult to control the pacing of a game when you are individually outclassed. While I believe MandatoryCloud is a true, world class player, he's not on a level with Faker or Dade, Zuna and Bloodwater's aggressive bot lane play won't work against elite talent, and Sycho Sid, while he fits the team well, does not measure up to the amount of talent in this tournament. I think Vulcun has a higher ceiling and have more potential to succeed in this tournament than Cloud 9 because they have the difference makers where it matters most on the world stage at mid and jungle but I also think the floor is significantly lowered by Sycho Sid being outclassed and Zuna and Bloodwater playing a high risk lane style against superior talent.

8) Najin Black Sword
                Many thought the departure of Maknoon would spell the end of Najin Black Sword as a top tier team but a week and a half later they took first at NLB Spring with new top laner Expression. Watch, SSong, and Pray are all world class players at their positions (remember when Pray was considered better than Doublelift?). The big question mark for Najin Sword isn't the talent, or the team play as all of their players have extensive champion rosters, but the fact that they haven't been "competitively relevant" in quite some time. NLB is a massive online tournament that sometimes falls by the wayside with all of the attention (deserved) given to OGN's Champions League but NJBS have won both the Spring and Summer of this tiered league tournament against some of Korea's premium talent, some of which overlaps with OGN. It's really easy to dismiss Najin Sword but it's not like they haven't been playing at all it just hasn't been against the world class talent some of the other teams have seen. One advantage they do have is the potential element of surprise. If they can catch some of the elite teams off guard they have just as much talent and could end up surprising a lot of people. There is a reason they have all those Korean circuit points people. Don't discredit them so fast.

9) Gambit Gaming
                When Gambit is on, they're one of the best teams on the planet but with a few roster changes and a lot of ups and downs this season I'm not quite sure I can place them higher than this on this list. The only reason I have them this high is their inexplicable ability to perform at an elite level at LAN events and their experience on the world stage. It's easy to forget that Gambit was in the quarterfinals of Season 2 world championships because they've fallen quite a bit but there is a reason that they're back at worlds again. Diamond, AlexIch, Genja, and, at times, Darien all possess an incredible amount of talent and can slug it out with the best of them on the world stage. The big question will be the support play of Voidle on the world stage, as well as the hit or miss play of Darien in the top lane and whether or not Gambit can pull it together and be the team that we all have seen in the past.

10) Lemondogs
                Lemondogs were remarkably consistent after they made an early season roster change but, to me, none of their players have the ability to stand toe to toe with the worlds best. They got by in the EU LCS with great play from, perhaps their best player, Nukeduck and his synergy with jungler Dexter but overall they just lack the individual talent and, perhaps more importantly, international experience necessary to be successful in a tournament as big as this. I do however think they are better overall than the bottom tier of the teams in this tournament like TSM, Gaminggear, Mineski, and Gamania.

11) Team Solo Mid
                I'm going to break TSM's chances down by overanalyzing the role I'm most familiar with, the mid lane. Reginald has to play against Faker, Nukeduck, Mazzerin, and Cool. I think he's better than Mazzerin but significantly weaker than Faker, Nukeduck, and Cool. TSM will need to find a way to hide this massive mismatch against the superior talent on OMG, SKT1, and Lemondogs or they'll have a lot of trouble unless they can abuse the other matchups in which they aren't much stronger than their opponents. I just can't see TSM making it out of this group. They may take a game from Lemondogs and they should 2-0 but overall they're just outclassed. Combine the recent drama and they're in a tough spot. That being said, however, TSM always seem to turn it on when it matters. They have international experience and if they can get into that "us vs them" mentality that helps them be so successful, they might be able to build some momentum and surprise some people.

12) Gamania Bears
                Gamania had quite a run in TeSL beating teams like Taipei Assassins and Snipers, AHQ, and Wayi Spider as well as having a respectable showing against the Korean Xenics Storm at the massive Hong Kong Esports Tournament. While showing a lot of promise for a relatively new team (formed in April 2013), Gamania Bears will be abused in picks/bans with their very limited champion pools due to being a team of specialists. Even without targeted bans, Gamania tend to play the very old fashioned "farm-fest" style of game which will be punished by strong early game teams. Maple is probably the strongest player on this team but with a tournament filled with insanely powerful mid lane players, I just can't see Gamania winning against any of the teams advancing out of group stage. Some team will get lucky enough to get paired against Gamania in the quarters which increases their chances of winning the whole tournament quite a bit. The old adage, "you can't win the championship if you're not there" applies.

13) Mineski
                Mineski had a miracle run in the Southeast Asian Qualifier defeating the heavily favored Singapore Sentinels to get their spot in worlds playing their hyper aggressive, "yolo queue" style to continuously pressure their opponents. While they may not have the individual talent, or the team play to do well at worlds, I do think that by playing as aggressively as they do could potentially create a shock factor for some lower tier pro teams and put them on the back foot. I don't think Mineski will win more than a game or two because their style is punished by superior talent but they may catch somebody off guard and play spoiler in the group stage. I also think they're more likely to "cheese" somebody than anybody else in this tournament.

14) Gaming

                GamingGear got into the wildcard tournament qualifier through some sort of loophole after failing to get into the EU LCS Qualifiers. While they did have a sort of Cinderella story advancing through the tournament to defeat the favored Pain Gaming from Brazil, they did so playing the same wombo-combo  team comp (for the most part) built around Mazzerin's Orianna. I just can't see GamingGear beating anybody before OR after picks/bans. They're simply outmatched in all aspects of the game and I'd be shocked if they win a single game.

Group Stage Record Predictions
** Bolded teams are my picks for who will advance **
Group A
OMG (Record 6-2)
1-1 vs sk
2-0 vs tsm
1-1 vs lemondogs
2-0 vs gaminggear

Lemondogs (Record 4-4)
0-2 vs sk
1-1 vs tsm
1-1 vs omg
2-0 vs gaming gear

SK T1 (Record 7-1)
2-0 vs TSM
2-0 vs Lemondogs
1-1 vs OMG
2-0 vs Gaminggear

TSM (Record 3-5)
0-2 vs SK
1-1 vs lemondogs
0-2 vs omg
2-0 vs gaming gear

Group B
MVP Ozone (Record 6-2)
2-0 vs mineski
2-0 vs gambit
1-1 vs fnatic
1-1 vs vulcan

Mineski (Record 1-7)
0-2 vs ozone
0-2 vs gambit
0-2 vs fnatic
1-1 vs vulcun

Gambit (Record 4-4)
0-2 vs ozone
2-0 vs mineski
1-1 vs fnatic
1-1 vs vulcun

Fnatic (Record 5-3)
1-1 vs ozone
2-0 vs mineski
1-1 vs gambit
1-1 vs vulcun

Vulcun (Record 4-4)
1-1 vs ozone
1-1 vs mineski
1-1 vs gambit
1-1 vs fnatic

Monday, September 2, 2013

August 2013 Solo Queue Statistics

August 2013
Highest Placement: Platinum IV (60 lp)     Lowest Placement : Platinum V (35 lp)
Win - Loss: 19 - 21 (4-2 in promo matches)
Kills/Deaths/Assists (avg): 190 / 182 / 341 (4.75 / 4.55 / 8.525) makes a 2.92:1 Ratio
Team K/D/A (avg): 928 / 931 / 1681  (23.2 / 23.3 / 42)
Longest Winning Streak: 6       Longest Losing Streak: 4
Largest LP Gain/Lost (single game): +30 / -22
Highest (peak) Kills/Deaths/Assists (high in each taken from all games): 15 / 10 / 24
Highest Single Game CS:  349 (Cassio)
Combat Grades:
            Lane Effectiveness Avg (scale of -2 to +2):  -.2
            Outside Lane Influence For Avg (scale of -2 to +2): +.34
            Outside Lane Influence Against Avg (scale of -2 to +2): +.74
            Roaming Effectiveness Avg (scale of -2 to +2): +.04
Contribution Grades:
            Positive Contribution Avg: 20.735
            Negative Contribution Avg: 19.6        
            Net Contribution Avg: +1.135
            Games +/-: 24 / 16                    
            Record in Positive Contribution Games:   10 - 14   Record in Negative: 9 - 7 

Damage Statistics      
Avg %Damage to Champions (% of teams total):  20.66%
                        Avg without support games: 24.875%
Gold Statistics: (rounded to nearest hundred)
            Avg Gold For (GPM): 10,000 (312.12/min)
                        Avg without Support games: 10,600 (338.61/min)
            Avg Gold Against (GPM): 11,200 (348.22/min)
                        Avg without Support Games: 10,300 (337.33/min)
Most Played Champion(s):
            Ahri (mid) (8 games) (5W-3L)
                        - Avg CS: 152.5, Avg K/D/A: 5.4 / 4 / 7.25, which makes a 3.16:1 ratio
                        - Enemy Avg CS:147.7
                        - Lane Effectiveness Avg: -.125
                        - Outside Lane Influences Avg (against/for): +.625 / +.375
                        - Gold For (gpm) / Against (gpm): 9900 (344.9) / 9400 (333.75)                  
                        - NOTE: Game length very short at avg 28:17     
                        - % Damage to Champs per Game (avg): 26.05%
                        - Contribution Grade: -.1.26

Champions Played: 17 (lux support and lux mid differentiated, etc.)

Duo queue Statistics
            Record: 2 - 5
            - Cpt Caodan: 1 game (1-0)
            - Odins0n: 6 games (1-5)

Average Match Time:  32:12  Shortest Match Time: 20:34  Longest Match Time: 52:56
Match Time Distribution:
            -  <20:00:  0 games
            -  20:00 to 25:00: 5 games (1-4)
            - 25:00 to 30:00: 14 games (6-8)
            - 30:00 to 35:00: 11 games (6-5)
            - 35:00 to 40:00: 3 games (2-1)
            - 40:00 to 45:00: 5 game (3-2)
            - 45:00 to 50:00: 0 games
            - >50:00: 2 games (1-1)
Pick Order Statistics:
Avg position: 3.2  Avg Position of duo: 4.14
            - 1st pick: 4 games (3-1)
            - 2nd pick: 4 games (1-3)
            - 3rd pick: 17 games (8-9)
            - 4th pick: 10 games (6-4)
            - 5th pick: 5 games (1-4)
Most Frequent Opponent: Ahri (3 games) (1-2)
Strongest Matchup (more than 3 games):
Weakest Matchup (more than 3 games): 
- vs Ahri (1-2) Avg K/D/A: 7.33 / 5.33 / 3, Avg CS For/Against: 184.7/166
Multi Game Summoners: none
First Bloods For/Against:  4/1
Record when getting first blood: 3-1   Record when giving up first blood: 0-1
Record in First Game of Session: 12 - 6     Record in Last Game of Session6 - 12
Record in Single Game sessions (counted as both first and last games): 3 - 2
Positional Records/Statistics:
  - Mid (50%): W/L: 12 - 8
            - Avg CS For/Aga: 187.9 / 174.9, Avg K/D/A:  6.35 / 4.6 / 7.3 (2.96:1)
            - Lane Effectiveness Avg: -.05
            - Outside Lane Influence Against / For: +.85 / +.4
            - Roaming: +.2
            - Contribution Grade: -.115
  - AD Carry (5%): W/L: 1 - 1, Avg CS For/Aga: 212 / 216, Avg K/D/A:  7 / 3.5 / 9 (4.57:1)
            - Contribution Grade: +10.7
  - Support (30%): W/L: 4 - 8, Avg CS enemy AD: 241.3, Avg  K/D/A: 2.6 / 5.3 / 12.7 (2.9:1)
            - Lane Effectiveness Avg: -.33
            - Outside Lane Influence Against / For: +.83 / +.25
            - Contribution Grade: +2.05 (only 3 negative games)
  - Top (5%): W/L 1 - 1, Avg CS For/Aga: 168.5 / 207, Avg K/D/A: 2.5 / 3.5 / 1.5 (1.14:1)
            - Contribution Grade: +.3       
  - Jungle (10%): W/L 2 - 2, Avg CS For/Aga: 133.75 / 109, Avg K/D/A: 3.25 / 3 / 5.5 (2.92:1)
            - Contribution Grade: +3.95

Environmental Statistics:
Longest Single Session: 4 games (2-2 record)
Time of Day (based on common playing blocks):
            - Night block (8:01pm to 4am):  27 games (11-16)
            - Morning block (4:01am to 12pm): 2 games (1 - 1)
            - Afternoon/Evening block (12:01pm to 8pm): 11 games (7 - 4)
Day of Week:
            - Monday: 4 games (3-1)
            - Tuesday: 2 games (1-1)
            - Wednesday: 4 games (1-3)
            - Thursday: 7 games (4-3)
            - Friday: 4 games (4-0)
            -Saturday: 10 games (5-5)
            - Sunday: 9 games (1-8)

            - Armin van Buuren: 3 games (0-3)
            - Dream Theater: 1 game (1-0)
            - Dubstep: 2 games (0-2)
            - Fair to Midland: 2 games (2-0)
            - Fleshgod Apocalypse: 1 game (1-0)
            - Led Zeppelin: 2 games (1-1)
            - Marilyn Manson: 1 game (0-1)
            - Melodic Death Metal Mix: 3 games (3-0)
            - General Metal Mix: 10 games (4-6)
            - Progressive Metal: 2 games (2-0)
            - Radiohead: 4 games (2-2)
            - Shineback: 3 games (1-2)
            - Soundtrack: 3 games (1-2)
            - Symphonx X: 1 game (0-1)
            - The Glitch Mob: 2 games (1-1

Goals from Last Month: 1.5 out of 3
1) Improve Lane effectiveness (be proactive)
            - Failed. Dramatic drop in lane effectiveness overall. Revisit assassin matchups like zed, talon, fizz, ahri.
2) Continue to reduce negative contribution
            - Slight success. Few outlying negative games but overall improvement. DON'T TILT
3) Make a concerted effort to roam more.
            - Success. significantly higher roaming effectiveness that was rewarded with wins.
            -RELEVANT STATS: 1-6 record in games where I'm outroamed. 6-2 in games where I outroam.
Goals for next month
1)  Improve Lane Effectiveness across the board but especially in mid matchups vs assassins
2) Continue Reducing Negative Contribution by eliminating those "tilt games"

3) Refocus Champion pool after a huge increase this month. Zone it back in to help focus.