How can I become a professional LoL player?
How good do you need to be?
Having the highest Elo and rank does not necessarily make you the best player, let alone a pro player. While having a high Elo in the upper portion of challenger will give you a head start in the application process to join a professional team, rank is not everything. This is because solo queue rank is dependent on individual skill, compared to true professional players with top-level teamwork tactics and strategies.
That said, pro players have been sniped off the challenger leader board in the past, the most notable being Faker. Faker was brought on to SKT at just 16 years of age when the organisation saw the mid-laner rapidly climb up the leader boards. Faker is now considered one of the best players in the industry.
What do you need to be a League of Legends pro player?
As mentioned before, you need to have great communication skills to be a pro. League of Legends is after all a team esport, and while you can climb the ranks with individual skill and carrying, it can only get you so far. To win games in a team setting communication and understanding must be impeccable, as any mistakes made will be immediately capitalised on by the enemy.
To be a pro player, you have got to put in some serious hours. In an interview, Bjergsen revealed that top players in the NA LCS put at least ten hours into the game every day, some even exceeding that depending on their level of dedication. Ten hours is a seriously long time, especially considering the ‘work’, practice and scrimming is extremely intense, and players have to go all out in order to improve.
Your Champion Pool has to be varied
On top of communication and dedication, you need to have a wide champion pool. A wide champion pool is an absolute must in the competitive scene. Without one you will be easily shut down, either by getting target banned or constantly getting counter pick butting your draft phase at an immediate disadvantage. This diversity in the champion pool is also what separates pros from top solo queue players. Solo queue players usually have an extremely limited champion pool, some even being one tricks – meaning that they can only play one champion at an extremely high level. Pro players, on the other hand, should be able to play six or more champions extremely well, have familiarity with the rest, and constantly adapt to the changing meta.
How much time does a professional esports player train daily?
As previously mentioned, professional League of Legends players train relentlessly in an effort to better their skills and knowledge of the game. This is because League of Legends is constantly changing, while patches are controlled in the professional scene, player still have to adapt every season / split. Only by fully grasping the meta for that specific time period can teams be successful, as every small detail counts.
It has been revealed most professional players in the LCS train between eight to ten hours a day. This time composes mostly of scrims and in-depth reviews by the team’s analyst, where the team gather together and discuss how to improve. On top of this, the top players also are required to play solo queue in order to keep their mechanics up. Over all, someone wanting to be the best may invest twelve to fourteen hours every day on the game.
Can a professional team have both male and female players?
Unlike traditional sports, not only can men and women compete in the same tournament, they can be on the same team in League of Legends. That said, this structure has rarely ever been seen in esports, with only a few instances of this ever happening.
Most teams, if not all teams in competitive League of Legends at the highest level are all currently occupied with all males. While all female teams do definitely exist, none belong to the LCS, most of them being either casual or semi competitive teams. However, due to their rarity, they are usually sponsored.
The most popular or infamous all female LoL team would have to be Team Siren. The members were heavily hyped up in a promotional video, while the team failed to find competitive success, members found support streaming. Unfortunately, the team soon after disbanded citing internal conflict as the main factor for their downfall.
In League of Legends, there is a lack of high level female competitive players, however, other games like CS:GO have much more.
Why men and women don’t co-exist in the same team for LoL
Generally, there is a lack of extremely high-level female LoL players, with 2017 only having three women in the challenger rankings. Even then, challenger is not an automatic qualification to join the competitive LCS scene, as only the best challenger players qualify in an event which MAY allow for a spot in the NA CS.
In addition, top LCS teams usually all reside in a single team or game house. Having a mixed team then, is not deemed as the best of ideas by management. Since men and women are after all different, with varying interests, and this can seriously impact both team dynamics and communication.
That said, if an organisation really wanted some exposure as Renegades did in the past, a team with both men and women CAN exist. The Renegades line up saw four male players alongside ‘Remi’, the first female player in the LCS scene.
What are the tiers of competitive League of Legends teams, and how you can join?
There are a range of levels you can expect in joining a League of Legends team, from casual, to semi competitive, competitive and at the top level, LCS. As expected, joining the better teams will be much harder, as they not only expect much more from players, but competition for the position do exist.
Casual teams are usually formed from a group of friends who decide to occasionally compete in some smaller events. However, many League of Legend Facebook groups have a handful of members calling for new teammates in local events.
The easiest way to find small team for some ranked flex games, or the occasional competitive tournament would be to join a local LoL Facebook group and scour the event you wish to join Facebook’s page. These callings / posts will usually post the positions they are looking for, the range of ranks acceptable and requirements for discord or some other voice call app.
Semi-competitive teams aim to compete in sponsored League of Legends competitions but have limited games in them either due to skill, or time constraints. These teams are usually not sponsored and are made up of people trying to start up their League of Legends career on the side. Listings for semi-competitive teams are sometimes on forums or the League of Legends boards.
Competitive League of Legends Teams
Competitive teams are usually sponsored by one, or a few different brands. Most players are full time, with some teams even living together in a gaming house like top LCS teams.
To join a competitive team, you would usually need to know someone in the scene who already plays, as positions are usually advertised by word of mouth. Joining a semi-competitive team and finding success would be the most straight forward way to advance into the competitive scene.
LCS teams are usually the top teams in the region, joining is extremely difficult as competition for every position exists. Getting onto an LCS team’s starting roster would usually require you to be extremely outstanding in the NA CS, or simply already being with the main team’s academy roster. These is no easy way to enter the LCS scene, even the top players of the ladder only get invited to ‘scouting grounds’, a place where teams can pick new ‘blood’ usually for the academy team.
While most position are immediately filled once a player has been kicked off or benched, some LCS team do announce try outs for a position. This would require you to send in your information, gameplay and may even require you to fly out to the teams’ base for synergy testing with the existing team.