How to Gain Dragon Control in LoL
Thu 8th Aug 2019 - 6:00pm
Objective control is one of the most important aspects in League of Legends. Gaining control of objectives gives you a higher chance at winning the game. Dragon as an objective is very important because of the buffs it gives throughout the game. Having dragon control also means that you have control of the bottom side of the map. This allows you to gain vision on the enemies’ side of the map, which gives you opportunities to make plays.
Passive: Gain bonuses based on the type of dragons slain.
Cloud Drake: +3/4.5/6% bonus movement speed, tripled to 9/13.5/18% while out-of-combat.
Infernal Drake: +10/17/24% attack damage and ability power.
Ocean Drake: Restores 6/9/12% of your missing health and mana every 5 seconds when you haven't taken damage from champions or turrets within the last 8 seconds.
Mountain Drake: + 16/23/30% bonus true damage to epic monsters and turrets.
Slaying a dragon will grant a buff depending on the element ("color") of the dragon; the buff can stack up to three times per element. These buffs are granted to the entire team (of the player who killed the dragon) and last until the end of the game.
Slaying the Elder Dragon will increase these effects (by 50%/100%) for a limited time span.
What to Do Before Going for Dragon Control:
The first thing you must do is to see what dragon is coming up. Dragons such as Mountain, Infernal, and Ocean are very important as the game goes on. These dragons scale the most, which will be useful to you towards the mid and late game. Having dragon control will set you up for Elder Dragon later in the game. The next move you will need to make is to buy wards and upgrade your trinket. Control Wards can block out vision from the other team, which will help gain dragon control. The placement of your wards is also very important. Before you place them, make sure that it will be useful to you and your team. Wards that can’t be destroyed easily will help you the most. Placing a useless ward is a waste of gold, and the enemy will just capitalize on your mistake by walking up and placing their own wards. Losing vision of the enemy will result in your team having to rush at the task at hand.
Having Oracle Alteration and Farsight Alteration at this point in the game is very important. Oracle Alteration will allow you to clear the wards in the river, or in the bushes on your side of the map. Clearing these wards will deny vision control for the enemy. This will allow you to catch people out of position or force them to make a play that they don’t want to make if you have vision. Farsight Alteration can give you a quick sneak peek on where the enemy are. If you are unsure where the enemy may be, you can use Farsight Alteration to scout out the area ahead before proceeding.
The last thing you need to do is go back and buy your items. If you have any gold to buy items for any combat stats, you need to do so right before dragon spawns. You never want to be items behind because it can cost you the fight. You also want to manage your waves correctly if you want to be successful in this. If the enemy has Teleport, you must force his Teleport by making a play with your team around dragon. Winning a 5v4 is likely but losing the fight will result in Dragon and your turret going down.
What to Do When Trying to Get Dragon Control:
1. Always stay with your team. Playing with your team will give you the advantage in most scenarios. Going in alone can just waste a great opportunity to capitalize on the enemy.
2. Approach your destination with caution. You want to play slow in these situations. Try and get vision every time you encounter a bush or a corner of fog of war that the enemy could be in. It would be advised that your tank was the one to do this because anyone else can get assassinated.
3. Look at your map and jungler's Smite cooldown. You never want to make the mistake of going for dragon without your team. This will result in certain death and giving the enemy free gold. You should also be looking at your jungle’s Smite cooldown. Most of the time your jungler will spam his smite cooldown timer in chat to show whether it’s up or down. You must pay attention to this because this can make or break whether you can go for Dragon or not.
What Not to Do:
1. Never go in without your team. This may be obvious to some people, but this happens often.
2. Never fight for Dragon without a plan. Do not play on autopilot when going for objectives. Always have a clear head and have an idea on what can win you the fight for Dragon. It all depends on what role you’re playing because each role will have a different job.
3. Do not try and force a play because you feel as if you need to do something. Everyone does this at some point, and you may get flamed for not doing anything. Sometimes its ok to just let some things go because it is not worth the risk. Know your limits and take things slow.
Gaining Control from Blue Side:
Gaining Dragon control on blue side can be tricky at times. The reason for that is because you are not facing the Dragon pit when you are approaching. Therefore, buying wards are important for this objective. Without wards, you really can’t do much. There are three ways to get to the Dragon pit. The first one is at the middle mouth of the river. From blue side, you can go through middle, or try and slide through your jungle above your red buff. This is the most common route due to the distance you must walk. It is also where you usually come from because your team has probably gone back to base.
Another way to get to Dragon from blue side is through your own tri-bush. This route can be used as well but takes a little bit longer. Most of the time you will not have the time unless you set up before the enemy got there. This route can be used by an assassin, or even a top lane bruiser to try and throw off the enemy. If you are going to make a play this way, you need to wait for your team. Running in too quickly can result in your death because the enemy will collapse on you.
The final way to get to the pit is using the blast cone to get in or just flashing over the pit. The blast cone is usually gone by now, but it may be an option. The jungler usually takes the blast cone because they usually have an escape by using Flash or their gap closing ability. This is typically used when your team is not there as five, or your jungler can engage from there. Your team can engage and try to collapse on them. Flashing is usually used when you fail to get over the wall with you gap closer as a jungler. It is usually when the player is panicked and desperate for the dragon. If your jungler goes in without you being near the pit, your teammate is probably dead. I would not try and force anything you know you can’t do.
If your team gets to Dragon first, you are going to have to ward the surrounding area. This is crucial because typically the enemy does not have wards around the area, only the pit. This is where you use Oracle Alteration and Control Wards. You want to clear out the wards to deny any Teleports as the enemy are collapsing on you. It’s much easier to deal with an enemy Teleporting while the fights going on. Placing wards at the enemy Blue Sentinel, River Brush, and the right side of middle lane are the best wards. This is where the enemy usually comes from and you will see them coming the whole way.
Gaining Control from Red Side:
Gaining control of Dragon from Red Side can feel easier but can be just as uncomfortable as blue side. If you find yourself in the dark, you are going to have to place wards at the edge of the entry points. You need to get some vision so you can move forward. As you are approaching from placing your wards, use a Farsight Alteration to see the dragon's health. This will tell you how fast you need to start moving to try and steal the Dragon.
The routes you can take are from middle lane, Blue Sentinel, and/or bottom lane. The most common ones are from middle lane, and Blue Sentinel because it’s just an easier path for a team to run through. Moving at a quick pace can attribute to taking these paths because of the accessibility to Dragon from these routes. Bottom lane is another way you can get to Dragon, but it is a bit risky. This route takes a ton of time and usually the enemy has pushed the lanes out before they headed to Dragon. This will result in the enemy having vision of you and they will see you coming from a mile away. If that’s not the case and you can sneak through, this route can be amazing for you and your team. If you are an assassin, or just an engager, this element of surprise can help your team get Dragon and even win the fight in the process.
If you are lucky enough to get to Dragon first, you are going to want to put wards in the pit, above the pit, enemy tri-bush, and in the river bush. These wards will always give you full vision of the enemy. It is much easier to see the enemy from red side because of where the Dragon pit is located. Clearing out the Dragon pit with a Control Ward is a must, you can also use your Oracle Alteration to clear out the surrounding area. One thing that you can use to your advantage is pulling out the Dragon from the pit. When you hit the Dragon, you can drag it out by not hitting him and run towards your side of the map. This will prevent the jungler from just using the blast cone or Flashing into the pit and instantly stealing the Dragon from you. This will also deny them vision of the Dragon. If they placed a ward into the pit, they can’t see the dragon if it’s pulled out. They will need to run in blind while you are taking the Dragon.
Think About Your Jungler:
You always want your jungler to feel comfortable. Having an anxious jungler will not end well for your team because of the smite war. Your jungler may lose the Smite battle due to not Smiting, getting out-Smited, or not having Smite. Not everything is lost though, because you still must fight the enemy that are in front of you. Your focus should be on the fight at hand, do not worry about what the loss of Dragon means for your team. You can potentially get objectives out of the exchange such as towers and even better, vision control on the enemy if you come out on top. The next big objective would be Baron, so you would go get vision control there before the enemy respawns if you have any wards or trinkets left.
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