How To Play Support In League Of Legends
Last Updated: August 24, 2021
Do you want to carry your team but not as the primary damage dealer? Do you want to win games by helping them secure leads? In this guide we’ll show you how to play Support in League of Legends.
The Support role is very underrated and very underappreciated. A lot of people actively avoid playing support because they think that it’s too boring or that it’s too passive. These people are missing out. Nothing beats the feeling of knowing that your team won the game not because of the carries, but because of the support. You see, the support is the glue that ties the whole team together. A good support raises the ceiling of the whole team and can make everyone look like they’re pro players.
Why Play Support?
Support is the backbone of a team. Like Junglers, their presence affects the game the most. Their impact extends way beyond the damage that they deal and are more about keeping their team alive and dishing out crowd control that turns fights into your favor.
Your primary responsibility would be to make sure your teammates get ahead. Supports usually lane with the ADC at the bottom lane, so it’s a good start to practice keeping your ADC alive and help them scale into the late game. You are also responsible for warding around the map and contesting vision control on key areas around objectives.
Types of Support Champions
There are a lot of champions who you can play as a support. They generally fall under two main categories: Engagers and Enchanters. Engagers are champions who have crowd control that allow them to peel for their team or to flank enemies in a team fight. Enchanters, on the other hand, have kits that are geared towards keeping their teammates alive through heals, shields, and other buffs. There’s also a third type of support champion that defies classification. These champions are played as a support but kind of have a different playstyle, usually inclined to be more aggressive.
Knowing what each type does is important as picking your champion will factor into your team’s success.
Most champions that fall under this type have some sort of spell that immobilizes the enemy. They can be in the form of hooks, knock-ups, stuns, slows, or snares. Having a lot of crowd control allows these champions to play more aggressively and they are often looking to set up a kill for their team. But just because they tend to focus more on offense doesn’t mean they can’t play defensively. These champions can also use their crowd control to stop enemy champions from diving into their team, giving them a chance to reposition or to escape an unfavorable situation.
Blitzcrank, Nautilus, Alistar, Thresh, and Leona are great examples of engagers. Try them out if you want to make the highlight reel of your team.
Enchanters are champions that quite literally “enchant” your team. These champions have a lot of spells that not just increase the survivability of their teammates, they can also increase their damage output as well. Most enchanters also have some form of crowd control in their kit so they’re generally the safer pick when it comes to playing support. They can just stand back, buff up their team, and watch them tear through the enemies.
Lulu, Nami, Soraka, Sona, and Yuumi are great examples of enchanters. Pick them up if your team has enough cc and could use more buffs.
Some people call these types off-meta supports, or carry supports, or troll supports. Whatever you call them, these champions are still pretty good at being the support in certain situations. These champions can be classified as ADCs, Mages, or even Assassins. Picking these champions have their benefits, but make sure to pick them only when you’re sure about what you’re doing. Oftentimes, these champions build one support item and then build full damage.
Champions like Pantheon, Miss Fortune, Vel’Koz, and Fiddlesticks are usually used in other roles but can sometimes be used as a support. They don’t provide the same benefits as true supports but are very strong in the right circumstances.
What Are Your Responsibilities As A Support?
Before we get into how you play as a Support, you must first know what it is exactly a Support does. As we’ve said before, your main job is to keep your team alive and help them get ahead. It’s more than just being around them and helping them get kills or being around them and keeping enemies away. You also need to learn how to Roam and you must have great Vision Control
Wards are super important in League of Legends. With the fog of war around, it can be nerve wracking trying to figure out where your enemies are. Especially if they’re not visible on the mini map. Having wards grant you vision on certain areas. It’s a good idea to place wards around choke points on the map. These are areas that are sure to pick up sight of enemies. They’ll be often passing through choke points so having wards there would be a big help for your team.
Knowing where to place Vision Wards, also known as Pink Wards, is also important. These wards are not invisible and can easily be cleared by enemies, but they reveal anything that is invisible whether they’re wards or stealthed champions.
In the laning phase, you should be warding the tri-brush and the river brush. Both blue and red sides of the map have a tri-brush so make sure to keep those warded.
Another important aspect of playing support is knowing when to roam. Just like the jungler and the mid lane, supports often roam to other lanes and help their team out. It’s important to have Lane Priority early on in the bottom lane so that you could roam. Lane Priority is when a lane is pushed up to the enemy’s turret and they have no choice but to clear the minion wave or risk having their turret damaged. It’s also important to make sure your ADC is ahead and can be self-sustaining before you decide to roam to other lanes. However, if you think that your lane is losing because of unfavorable circumstances, you can just go ahead and roam to other lanes and help your other teammates get a lead. Once your team builds enough of a lead, your ADC’s success will follow.
In the early game, your job is to make sure your ADC can farm safely. Look to poke the enemy ADC and try to deny them from getting last hits on your minions. You’ll also want to have good ward placement in the river area so you can spot potential early ganks from the enemy jungler. Having good ward placement will also allow you to alert your jungler and let them know whether or not it’s safe to gank your lane. You’ll generally want to play safe and just let your ADC farm. Try to assist your jungler when they’re going for an early Dragon. Be on the lookout for opportunities to kill the enemy ADC whenever you have a chance.
Mid to Late Game
This is when you start to shine as a support. Around this time, you’ll want to roam around the map and try getting your team ahead. This is also the time when you and your team will try to contest objectives. At this point in the game, you’ll have enough of your core items to help you help your team. In team fights, try your best to protect everyone in your team. Although, sometimes you have to understand that you can’t save everyone. In situations like that, it’s best to keep your ADC alive or to keep whoever it is on your team that deals the most damage. Always be on the lookout for picks and enemies out of position.
Stick with your team, protect your carries, and you’ll win the game.
- Always be vigilant of your enemy. It’s more than just keeping an eye on them on the mini map. You need to be aware of cooldowns and timers. If your lane opponents burn their flash or summoner spells or their ultimates, you can send a ping to your teammates to let them know that your enemies are vulnerable.
- Be careful when warding deep in the enemy’s territory. Try to do it only when you’re sure that you won’t be spotted or if there aren’t enemies nearby. If you’re unsure but need those deep wards, try to get a teammate to accompany you.
- Don’t mind dying if it means saving your carries. It’s okay to take a brunt of the damage as long as it means that your enemies won’t be able to deal as much damage to the rest of your team.
- For your summoner spells, you would want to take exhaust most of the time. Heal and ignite would also work well in some situations.
So there you have it! We hope you’ll enjoy playing support and become the unsung hero of your team. Supports are the real MVP. Have fun and see you on the Rift!