“Map awareness to me is my top 3 tips on how to climb in League. Anyone who works on map awareness can easily climb from bronze to silver or silver to gold by simply working hard at improving it.” -GordanRamseyGaming
But the thing about map awareness is that it is somewhat hard to teach. Most people understand the concept, but how do you actually get better at it? It’s really difficult to give concrete advice on how to improve your map awareness. With the help of GordanRamseyGaming, we’re going to give you specific ways to help improve your map awareness and tell you about some added benefits one has when he has mastered map awareness.
Tip #1 – Listen
When I realized I desperately needed to improve my map awareness I would have someone streaming in the background while I played. Anytime I heard a ping from the streamer I would always look down at my map just to make sure it wasn’t one of my teammates. You double your load of pings and that always gets your eyes glancing down at the minimap.
Seriously, try it out. Some people like to play it at half speed. Have this video playing in the background or listen to a stream in your next game and see if it forces you to look down at the map more often.
Tip #2 – Do drills
Remember doing drills at soccer practice? Yes, we can do drills for map awareness too. You have to do these drills with the mindset where this is the most important thing in your game. Do these with absolute dedication or you will not improve. Do not go onto the next step until you have completed each step with at least 90% consistency.
- Step one: Make sure you are looking at the map at least once per wave. ~30 seconds
- Step two: Make sure you are looking at the map at least once per ability cast.
- Step three: Make sure you are looking at the map at least once per auto attack.
Tip #3 – Master one champion
It is my belief that we cannot focus on more than one complicated task at a time. When we are having to think super hard about how to trade with a champion, or how a champions AA animation works or when your abilities come off CD, we greatly reduce our focus on the map. Take the time to master 2-3 champions and try to only play those champions. You will find that you will have more “brain space?” to think about the map and look at it.
The not so obvious bonuses to having good map awareness
- Decision Making:
Map awareness isn’t just about looking at the map and seeing who is there. Map awareness is also thinking about what is the next step and where is the pressure going to be soon. Let’s say you have a bot inhib already down and baron spawns in 2 mins. You’re going to know bot lane is going to push for you because of the super minions. You should tell your team let’s push mid or top to create pressure on two sides of the map. Eventually you will have someone go bot lane to take care of the super minion wave which will leave you in a 4v5 position and make objectives easier to take. Map awareness is about understanding what is happening on the map and adjusting your position and objective based on those things. Always be looking for what is the next move in the next 1-2 minutes.
- It helps everyone on your team:
If your looking at the map in top lane and see the enemy jungle about to gank bot lane you can spam ping bot and it might save their life. At the same time you can use that knowledge to go aggressive on your lane opponent, or safely gank mid lane with no threat of the jungler counter ganking.
Similar to the first point, but more directed on actually making decisions with pings or in chat. When you begin to develop good map awareness you can also start shot calling for your team. I felt confident to do this because of my good map awareness. I was more aware of the big picture and knew how to bring the team together and make good decisions based on my good map awareness.
You can easily bait the jungler or a roamer by having good map awareness. If you see someone coming to your lane and understand they are about to gank, you can easily stand in a position that doesn’t give away that you know they are there, but also doesn’t enable them to make a successful gank off you. This wastes their time, and also might give your team time to respond and counter gank.
Overall, the best way to get better at something is just doing it over and over. Get in there and keep playing League of Legends.