"I have no idea how to write a blog. What do you want from me?"
- Alex "AgentA2" Tu
I completely stand by the above quote. It is important to note that it contains within it two parts. 1: I have no idea how to write a blog. That much is a given. I've never done anything like this, and thus am bound to make mistakes. However, with 2: What do you want from me? This is an honest invitation for requests. I'm going to be writing these posts for the GetRECt website for anyone who wants to read about what's going on with the OKLCS, and the occasional little fun article. You might agree or disagree with anything I might have to say, and I'm happy to respond to comments. More importantly, please do comment with your opinions about the article, and ideas regarding what topic to write about for the next one.
S3 of the OKLCS will be starting soon, so let's do a quick recap. S2 culminated in what I considered a hugely successful playoffs event. Four teams from each of the two divisions (Gold- and Diamond-capped) participated in the event. This split, we will be including a third division, Platinum-capped, and removing the exception to Gold-capped allowing for a single Platinum+ player. There are new, returning, and revised rosters coming in to all of the divisions, and we look forward to a high level of competition from each of them.
I can't say anything about any of the newer teams coming in, but after watching these teams for 7 weeks, there are definitely some key players to watch. Keep in mind, these are all based on my opinion after watching, and do not necessarily reflect who I consider the strongest players in each of their positions, but rather who plays an impressive and key role in their particular team. That being said, if you're interested in watching the OKLCS, keep your eyes out for these summoners:
EDIT: Some of these players may not be playing in S3. However, I'd still like to recognize the players and lament the loss of those who will not be participating.
If you're in Oklahoma League of Legends, you know who he is. Jack is not only an interesting person to interact with but also an interesting player to watch. Throughout the OKLCS, Jack plays a variety of roles for Land Snek: peel, engage, carry, you name it. Repeated strong performances on Gangplank, even when not in meta, have made The Saltwater Scourge a difficult consideration for any team playing against Land Snek. One of the best traits of Jack's top lane play is his teamfight awareness. Often times, top lane players tunnel in teamfights: continuing to chase down their target, usually the AD carry, to the ends of the earth. Jack chases the AD carry to the ends of the teamfight, after which he quickly turns back to help his own carries with the enemy team's frontline, saving valuable time continuing to help the teamfight rather than chase. Jack does, however, have a tendency to seemingly randomly be solokilled, which can lead to a deficiency in Land Snek when one of their biggest playmakers is suddenly suppressed.
The Pizza Lords Rebirth ended last split as the 2nd place seed of Gold-capped but will be moving up the the Platinum-capped division this next split. Pizza Lords Rebirth was undoubtedly one of the better teams from a caster's perspective, for the sole reason that they teamfight. A lot. And with really very elaborate team compositions. Parallelogram in particular, if you've watched any of the games, has shown a propensity for teamfight oriented top laners. His pocket Galio pick in particular catches a lot of teams off guard. Most players don't even know the details of Galio's kit. I do, and even I am surprised at his ability to turn around seemingly lost fights with Idol of Durand and the insane healing from Bulwark. With the Galio rework incoming, Parallelogram might have to find some new picks that he feels comfortable with, and as competition increases, the Pizza Lords are going to have to have more in their arsenal than teamfighting.
It's hard to argue with results. Unlucky is the reigning champion of Diamond-capped as well as the team with an undefeated record. And a lot of it has to do with their jungler. His name is constantly changing, but for a lot of the split, we referred to him as Date. Unlucky's jungler exerted enormous amounts of pressure for his lanes as well as wandering into the enemy jungle and solokilling the enemy jungler. On picks like Rengar, he ripped teams to shreds singlehandedly. On picks like Ivern, he stifled enemy playmaking to an unreal degree. For most of the regular split, it just seemed like there was no stopping the king of the jungle.
Coming in as the big tank for PIGZ, MormonVSlayer excelled on some off meta jungle picks. On slow farming, but high utility junglers like Nautilus and Sejuani, MormonVSlayer made up for his champions' deficiencies in farm speed by keeping the ganks coming and being the big frontline for his team in fights. I was personally fairly tilted by some of his questionable item buys (Runic Echoes Sejuani comes to mind), but ultimately he and the rest of PIGZ were able to pull out all the victories in their games.
Formerly the mid laner for TRZ, Leeroy is definitely a fun mid laner to watch. His champion pool is among the largest of the mid laners in Diamond-capped. Leeroy is always among the first to bring out new picks into the OKLCS, one of the early adopters of Taliyah and Corki as far as the OKLCS goes. He always has his pocket Twisted Fate available to him, and can even bring out some of the newly reworked assassins like LeBlanc to great effect if left available to him. He evades ganks with grace, roams effectively, and keeps his farm numbers high; it's hard to criticize Leeroy's performance this last split. With a new team behind him, I hope he can continue to impress and show the champion diversity he is recognized for.
PIGZ OG Camel Ryder
Another high performing player from the Gold-capped champions, OG Camel Ryder shines on some of the traditional mid laners: the quintessential control mage Orianna, and the embodiment of assassins, Zed. While neither is considered particularly strong in comparison to their more recently changed counterparts, OG Camel Ryder's ability to land the big shockwaves or find the squishy targets in the midst of a chaotic teamfight has led Pigz Might Fly to victory time and time again. If we see him expanding his champion pool a tad, OG Camel Ryder will be a force to be reckoned with in the mid lane.
RetOK Thien sama
If you're watching a Retribution game, you should almost expect at some point to hear the phrase, "Thien goes legendary!" The hyper carry marksman of Retribution boasts an absurdly strong laning phase as well as exceptional damage in teamfights. Thien's mechanics and positioning are all top notch, to the point where you won't realize Retribution is winning the teamfight until you hear the Triple Kill! because you can't see where Thien is auto attacking from. Thien excels on hyper carries like Twitch, on which he emerges from Ambush invisibility in just the right way to disintegrate entire teams, as well as safety champions like Caitlyn and Ezreal, on which he fluidly finds perfect places to auto attack. Retribution plays around Thien's strengths well, but this split, they need to find other win conditions if they are to succeed.
The Freelance 5 came in as a new team and immediately cemented themselves as a likable team. Oklahoman10, the adc and Platinum exception for the team last split, was a solid source of teamfight damage and laning prowess. Often playing Jinx, Oklahoman10 was able to snowball teamfights with Get Excited and run down teams who failed to adequately focus him down. He'll have to find his place with utility AD carries in the coming split if the Freelance 5 are to find success in S3, but his ability to find auto attacks in teamfights will definitely be appreciated.
What's an AD carry without his support? Gavii constantly surprises his opponents with his champion pool, quickly picking up on changing support metas between tanks, utility, and mage supports. Gavii has absolutely extraordinary Redemption placement, a strength that is greatly appreciated in a support player, and his skillshot accuracy is deadly. In the midst of mage support meta, Gavii dug deep to play Thresh in the playoffs of the OKLCS... and stole a Baron with his Death Sentence. He has a tendency to get caught a little bit more on average than the other supports in Diamond-capped, but he and his bottom lane partner are a strength that Retribution can rely upon.
3rd place seed Vengeance, sister team to Retribution, had some great plays throughout the season, in no small part due to captain and support player aceben3. Mostly playing utility supports like Janna and Nami, aceben3 was a source of relief to Vengeance's marksman as he peeled the enemy's divers while the other players of Vengeance aggressively dove themselves. This is not to say, however, that aceben3 is not a playmaker. On picks like Nautilus, he was the one doing the catching, marking out of position enemy champions for death with accurate Dredge Lines and well placed Depth Charges. VngOK has a strong foundation to work with, but will have to compensate for the loss of star mid laner Adramtor to the upper reaches of the ranked ladder.
There is a lot of talent in the teams of the OKLCS, and I regret not being able to write about more players from last split. All of this, however, makes me incredibly excited for S3. The level of competition in all three of the divisions is looking to be higher than ever, and I am anxious to get into it. I love casting, I love watching coordinated League of Legends, and I love watching the players that I've gotten to know battle it out on the Rift. I hope players this split can live up to the hype. Join us to watch the OKLCS teams battle it out starting later this month, and I hope you'll come back to read updates and converse about League of Legends.
Next Article: Metas at Different Levels of Competition
Alex "AgentA2" Tu