A Comprehensive Guide to Champion Mastery in League of Legends - Get S+ in Every Game!
Thu 5th Sep 2019 - 10:34am
Champion Mastery in League of Legends is the system which measures each player’s skill with the champions that they play. At the end of each game, the player is given a grade for their performance, and that grade awards the summoner a certain number of Mastery Points (MP) for the champion that they played. The more MP you have on a champion, the higher your Mastery Level becomes; sounds simple enough, right? Well, for many LoL players, this is not the case and players are often left with questions like:
Why did I only get an A+ for having a K/D/A of 22/5/14 on my last Corki game?
The factors that contribute to a player’s Mastery and the rate at which they gain MP is initially confusing to players that have not taken the time to understand them. For this reason, we’re going to analyse the Mastery System from top to bottom and identify how you can use this knowledge to start flexing your prowess with your favourite champions!
There are 7 Mastery Levels in League of Legends for you to progress through. From Mastery Level 4 and up, you will receive rewards for the champion with which you have achieved this mastery:
- A loading screen badge, signifying your Mastery Level to players in your game
- A banner for your portrait when involved in an announcement (kills, towers, etc.)
- A Mastery Level emote which, we all know, is why we’re really aiming for Level 7
Progressing through Mastery Levels becomes increasingly more difficult as you climb; aside from Blue Essence or Champion Shards/Permanents, reaching Level 6 requires two Mastery 6 Tokens, awarded for receiving a grade of S-, S or S+, and Level 7 demands three Mastery 7 Tokens, given to only an S or S+ performance. Receiving these grades is intentionally challenging, as your performance is graded against the average performance of other players who played the same champion in the same position as you.
To gain MP and increase your Mastery Level, it’s a pretty simple philosophy - do good. Of course this is easier said than done, but the best way to gain more MP in a match is to focus on the elements of your game that your role is typically oriented towards. If you’re playing Jarvan IV in the Jungle, your focus should be on dominating all aspects of the Jungle instead of necessarily just kills. To elaborate on this point and cover the key aspects of your game you should focus on, let’s move onto the Grades themselves.
Ranging from D- to S+, the range of Grades you can be given for your performance in-game are fairly extensive. The purpose behind such a wide range of final Grades is that there is an even larger pool of in-game variables that influence the Mastery System and judge your overall performance. Usually players would skip past this next screen but, in examining the Mastery System, it becomes a vital piece of information:
The information displayed on this screen represents your in-game stats; different champions and roles will have to focus on different elements of this screen in order to attain higher grades.
The most important metrics that influence your final Grade:
This goes without saying, but your Kills, Deaths and Assists throughout your game play a huge part in your final Grade. Depending on your role, Kills and Assists will be considered differently, meaning that support roles can still get that S+ Grade without having to get their hands too dirty through Kills and can just focus on Assisting their team.
The most common misconception that players will have, as mentioned previously in the article, is that a high K/D/A equals a guaranteed higher Grade. In reality, having a higher number of Kills and Assists, contrasted with fewer Deaths, essentially means you have more time to be proactive in the game and increase your income while simultaneously locking your opponents out. Kills on their own aren’t enough to provide a good Grade, they need to be combined with efficient use of the time that your enemies spend being dead by rotating around the map, pushing objectives and farming.
On top of your ability to close out Kills, your performance is also measured in the amount of damage you’re putting out. The challenge with maintaining an S-level damage output is that you are required to show consistency throughout the whole game as you poke out your enemies in lane, stay active in those mid-game skirmishes, and burn down your opponents in the crucial final teamfights.
Of course, this is more important for carry roles, but if you’re dealing tons of damage you’re always in with a good chance of boosting your performance. For Support players, there should also be a combined focus on your Crowd Control, Shields and/or Healing Scores, since you’re relied upon less for pure damage and more for the invaluable utility that we all love you for.
The bane of many new players in LoL, Creep Score is one of the most vital components of any S-level performance. While it is difficult to learn the ways of the farmer, this can also be a great way to ensure a high final Grade if you can rack up your CS total during a match, so that you can really stand out from the average player. There is no definite answer as to how much CS you should have throughout your games but aiming for 8 CS per minute is a solid amount if you’re contesting other objectives rather than tunneling in solely on farming.
When considering CS, what seems like a high number to you may not always land you the Grade you’re chasing. Since your Grade is calculated against the average performance of other players in your role at that time in the game, your CS needs to be consistent from start to finish; between fights and pressing for objectives, make sure you’re still rotating around the map to find CS if you want that coveted S+. For a neat guide on improving your CS, check out my previous article covering some tips and tricks to mastering League’s most valuable art.
Think about it! Kills are necessary in order to lock your enemies out of the game and Objectives are vital in strengthening your team’s presence across the map, so you should always strive to give yourself the best chance of securing these for your team. Vision Score is a statistic that can and should be focused on by every player in the game, not just Supports and Junglers, for the best results in your matches.
Your Vision Score is equal to 1 point per minute of lifetime from your wards + 1 point for every minute of vision you’ve denied from enemy wards, with a number of modifiers that affect these base figures. If your wards don’t spot enemy champions after a certain amount of time, are placed too close to vision created by allied structures or are considered too “safe” by being too close to your base, they will lose their value and yield a lower base value of points. Additionally, if you spot unseen enemies or epic monsters through the use of one of your abilities, you will gain extra Vision Score for your efforts. A higher Vision Score is always preferable and is a vital statistic for everyone in your match to consider.
The final major point of focus for today is Objective Damage. This is the simplest of the 5 key areas we have discussed throughout this article, as everyone can contribute to this statistic regardless of their preferred champion or role. That being said, Junglers will undoubtedly have this considered in their final Grading more than their laners will, as they’ll be simultaneously building to maximise their damage to the epic monsters on the Rift and Smiting them down with pin-point precision.
To focus on Objective Damage, the player needs to develop an awareness of opportunity, otherwise known as “game sense”. Being able to identify the perfect time to take that early Ocean Drake or push in the enemy’s tower for some cheeky plate gold plays an essential part in maximising your Objective Damage effectively. Building up this knowledge is not an easy task, but that’s why we’re discussing it in this article; this is sure to separate you from the pack if you can nail it in each of your games.
Now, there are plenty of other important factors contributing to your final Grade, but I have chosen to focus specifically on these five for one very important reason: Income. League of Legends at its core is a game of Economy vs Economy, as you fight to increase your lead over the enemy and eventually win your match- this is achieved by spending your money on the items that will allow you to dominate your enemies most effectively so that you can push objectives until you win. These five previously mentioned statistics are the ones that influence your income the most and thus influence your Grade the most, becoming necessary in order to hit Mastery Level 7 and flex your skill for everyone you come up against.
Demonstrating Mastery on a Champion means perfecting these areas of your game in order to become an S+ player, so make sure you take this knowledge into your next matches on the Rift. GLHF!
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