Pacov's place to enjoy the show.

Update 5/25/2017

  • This thread is all done.  I've lost interest in jibba jibbing here, but its been fun.  Thanks for all the memories.  
  • I am streaming from time to time on twitch - generally just when I'm trying hard in ranked though.  If interested, you can check that out here:

Well, I started a thread back in Dec 2011 that’s seen a lot of activity (some 922,000 views over the course of a few years apparently...).  That thread had a good deal of tips/strategies/discussions about League of Legends from new and old players alike.  You can find the previous thread (now archived) here:  I think its time to start fresh with a new thread.

What’s this thread all about?
For those that followed the previous thread, the type of content you see here will be fairly consistent to what you are used to.  Please consider this a place to discuss LoL related content as you like.  I'll do the same and treat the thread as a blog as well where I talk about what’s going on with me in LoL.  Feel free to jump in and join the discussion if you like.

Quick background on me
I played a lot of Demigod as pacov/cheesuscrust. Back in August 2011, I started getting heavily involved in League of Legends, and folks from the community were kind enough to help me figure things out.  I play LoL most nights, stream, make videos and it’s my main gaming interest.

Some links 

Comments (Page 1)
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on Jun 06, 2014

So, for the inaugural discussion – anyone else interested in talking about elo and elo boosting?

I’ll start and others can chime in if they want.  Now, we need a preface here.  1st – I don’t condone elo boosting and do not participate in it.  The other thing that needs said is that we started having this discussion in the previous thread, but I cut that conversation short as it was more about a person than the practice.  I was a bit a rude/abrupt there, so my apologies for being a poop.  That said, please avoid any discussion about individuals and just talk about what it is, isn’t, and provide your thoughts in general.

What is elo boosting?
Specifically, it’s the process of paying an individual, company, or group to raise your current rank/elo to a higher level.  You commit to the transaction and set a specific rank/tier, make the payment, and someone else logs into your account and gets you to the agreed upon rank/tier.   Now, we can talk about people duo queuing to raise elo as well (paid, just with pals, etc), but for now, I’d like to just stay focused on this definition. 

Results of elo boosting
Let’s go with a generic example:  some guy is bronze 1.  He’s played a bunch of games and it certainly seems like he belongs at bronze 1 based on his skill level.  He pays a guy to boost him up to gold V.  Now, his mmr will actually be significantly above where his would normally be due to the boost, so he should end up playing against significantly better players when his account is returned to him.  This, of course, should result in him tanking other player’s games.  To make this practice even worse, in the previous season, once you made it into a division, you could not be demoted out of the bottom tier (eg you couldn’t be kicked from gold V down to Silver 1).  I believe that changed and now you can be demoted (correct me if I’m wrong please). 

Now, is that a big deal?  Well, it is to me.  I’m passionate about the game and extremely dislike this sort of thing because I worked hard to get where I’m at.  Having someone game the system by getting a boost means they didn’t earn their position.  It also means that these people hurt folks who have the misfortune of having them on their team in ranked as they cannot perform at the same level of play as someone in their current division. 

Elo boosting happens all the time, but is most prevalent as end of season awards are announced, etc.  Some folks just want the end of season rewards that you get for reaching a specific goal tier, some just want bragging rights among their friends, etc.

What does Riot think about elo boosting?
Here's a Rioter discussing Riot's policy towards Elo boosting on June 14, 2013:

They define elo boosting as:  "MMR Boosting is an action where a player (The Booster) logs into another player’s account (The Boostee) with the specific purpose of improving the boostee account’s MMR."

That same rioter's take on why elo boosting is poo:

  • Our Leagues system has been carefully tuned so that players are placed in the proper tier with others who are within a similar skill level. If a player’s MMR is boosted unnaturally they will most definitely falter when they begin to play ranked at that tier. If a player is unable to keep up with the other higher MMR players in their match they will most certainly degrade the game experience for everyone involved.
  • It takes hard work, commitment and buckets of blood, sweat and tears for players to earn a high ranking in League of Legends. MMR Boosting devalues the commitment that many of our players make to earn their rightful place among the world’s best League of Legends players.

And riot's punishment system for elo boosters:

  1. A two week account suspension in League of Legends.
  2. Removal of any prior Season’s Ranked Rewards (ie: Skins, Icons, Badges, etc)
  3. Disqualification from receiving the current season’s Ranked Rewards (ie: Skins, Icons, Badges, etc)
  4. Second time offenders' accounts will be permanently banned from League of Legends.

Next bit - Riot bans pro players and a coach back in May 2013:

2 reasons are sighted for the ban

  1. Violation of the summoners code
  2. Terms of Use violation.  Specifically :"You may not share your Account with anyone other than as expressly set forth herein..." and "Any distribution by you of your Account and/or your Login Credentials (except as expressly provided herein or otherwise explicitly approved of by Riot Games) may result in suspension or termination of your Account."

Last - they defined elo boosting again:

Definition of Elo-Boosting:
“Elo-boosting” is the repetitive and intentional act of an individual playing on someone else’s account (a “client”) for the purpose of artificially improving the client’s Elo rating. There is no minimum number of games required to be played, nor a minimum amount of Elo gain necessary to qualify as Elo-boosting. An attempt to boost Elo need not be successful in order to qualify as a rule violation.

Holy lots of crap about elo boosting...


on Jun 06, 2014

I've actually seriously considered Elo Boosting my IRL friends.  Not for rewards but because I felt that Riot has failed to give a way out of Elo Hell for people in their situation:  People who started playing Ranked way before they were ready.

I promised my buddies after they improved that there would be a reset for Season 4 and that would solve a lot of their problems.  One of my friends went 7-3 and carried hard even in games he lost.  Bronze V to Bronze V.  Fuck you Riot.

So I thought about jumping onto his account and taking him to high Bronze and seeing if he could get to Silver on his own if he wasn't in games decided completely by chance.  "Oh I'm sorry... you've got the petulant child that is going to AFK when you "steal" his blue that has been sitting in your jungle for 10 minutes.  Better luck next game summoner!  Sweet, this game you've received a free win because someone on the other team has internet trouble!  Or it would be free if you weren't on a team with a duo of griefers.  Better luck next game summoner!"

Well, too late.  My buddies are over it.  One of them is actually still a fan of the game and we talk LCS sometimes, but actually playing really holds no appeal for him.  400 MMR games can forever poison peoples love for LoL.

As far as boosting people to get rewards, I'm not a fan.  My understanding is that if you get to Gold V and then start tanking to the point you're Silver V, you get a warning to get things together.  I get that they don't want people to stop playing for fear of dropping, but that's pretty lenient in my opinion.  

I guess it's not the worst thing though.  Some of us have had poor experiences with having boosted players on their team (hi Karl!) but it would only be temporary right?  A boosted player taking over his account again will either get discouraged and stop playing, or will eventually start getting matched with Silvers even though he's a Gold player.  And then Bronzes.  And then he'll eventually be Silver and lose his rewards if he keeps with it.

Sure it does bother me a little to know that some people out there will have the rewards they didn't earn, but in the big scheme of things it isn't that bad.  Hedgie carried me on his coattails Season 2 for my Janna skin, and I prefer Death Blossom Elise far more than Protoss Elise for the one I actually worked my ass of for.  So I don't use either skin and don't feel like I completely earned one of them on my own, so I guess that might be one of the reasons it doesn't bother me that there are people out there who got boosted to get them.

on Jun 06, 2014

@thunder - re: the doom and gloom of bronze and wanting to help get your pals the heck out of there.  Yeah - that makes sense.  Honestly, I don't know that I'm a good enough player to dig some folks out of the holes they are in (even if I were to log in on their account and try).  I've seen bronze I, and even that is a scary place full of wtf and trolling and afk people and you name it.  Bronze 5 though? 

You've also got to wonder wtf is going on with a person's mmr if after a season reset, they go 7/3 and still end up in bronze.  It would be nice if the reset moved you in such a way where you could get out of bronze 5 going 7/3 ffs. No idea what is up with rito there.  That said, I probably wouldn't play ranked if I was somehow in that position... I really dislike high silver games as it is... make me play bronze forever... must be some other game for me to play then.

Some of us have had poor experiences with having boosted players on their team (hi Karl!) but it would only be temporary right?

Well... temporary in that you can get folks like this in your games and they eventually do poorly enough to get knocked back down.  That doesn't keep them from having a negative impact when they appear... or the next guy they come across or the guy that just was freshly boosted. 

re: awards - idk - that's likely the main reason some folks go for elo boosts.  While I probably should care a little, I don't really care that someone else might have the same victorious skin as me, but never earned it.  I think I mostly care about the negative impact these people have in games and knowing that these people didn't earn getting where I am by hard work. 



 The next discussion re: other ways of inflating your elo (duo queue) should be more interesting perhaps... I also have kind of an extreme view on that stuff...



on Jun 06, 2014

Let me say this about getting stuck in bronze:

If you consistently play above a bronze level, it is virtually impossible to get stuck in bronze.  This accounts for the presence of trolls.  And yes, I did spend some time in bronze in season 1.

The math is simple: there are more spots for leavers/trolls on the other team than on your team.  So, if we assume that every bronze V game has 1 leaver/troll, and that you are not a leaver/troll, the leaver/troll will be on the other team about 56% of the time.  Having a winning percentage of about 56% should get you out of bronze V fairly quickly.

Now the problem is psychology.  The damage that a leaver/troll on your team does to your psyche is much worse than the good that winning a game due to a leaver/troll on the other team does for you.  So what happens to people is that they go on tilt due to leavers/trolls, then they end up playing substantially beneath their skill level the next game and lose winnable games.  Thus, they end up stuck in bronze V...but its really due to their own behavior (albeit triggered by trolls).

But the point remains that if you consistently play above a bronze level, it is virtually impossible to get stuck at that level.  If you get stuck there, you need to correct your play.  It might be a psychological thing - in many cases it probably is - but it is extremely unlikely to be just bad luck.


Now, the other problem is that you need a substantial number of games to get the statistics to take over.  And grinding out enough games at bronze V while people are raging all around you is probably intensely unpleasant.  Thats completely understandable.

Another related issue is the fact that Riot doesn't bother to differentiate between people who are in lower bronze because they are simply not so skilled (nothing wrong with that) and people who are in lower bronze because they are massive trolls.  Its just not nice to make unskilled people constantly play with assholes.

Other games have implemented "loser island" situations where assholes get sorted into their own queue until they correct their behavior, but Riot never does this for their own weak reasons.  I feel very bad for lesser skilled players because of this.

on Jun 06, 2014

quick aside - I saw there were a few PBE updates today - downloaded them both and checked - no updated SR map (the map looks amazing imo).  Was hoping that might be up... but no eta I guess.  Will def make some vids and check it out when its on PBE though.


@karl - yeah - fair point and good to factor in psychology.  For me, if I ground my account into the dust learning to play in ranked and was mega bronze 5, even if I had my current skill level, I'd probably just quit playing ranked due to the level of frustration.  On that same token.  I know some people that are bronze.  They belong in bronze even if they think they do not.  I just think if you are that buried in bronze where you can have a reset, go 7/3 in placements, and place in bronze 5 (as in thunder's example)... something is a teeny bit off that could use a fix.

The general stats are there, though (backtracking a bit here) - I've got just as good odds of having someone appear that was elo boosted or a troll as the people on the other team. 



on Jun 06, 2014

I think one of the points of mine you guys may be missing is that there is actually a significant difference between Bronze V and Bronze V 400 MMR.  It is a difference that I don't think either of you could comprehend until you play in both types of games like I have.  We're talking the difference between the people who will quit if they get pissed off for whatever reason at Bronze V and the people who pick Rammus because you can feed the other team the most kills in a game because of his high move speed at Bronze V 400 MMR.

Yes Pacov, it is hard to carry on a smurf at my skill level and in hindsight I believe it was a pretty impossible task and I think I realize now why I felt like Sisyphus.  The games are so completely random that sometimes when I'm doing well and carrying my team, it sometimes doesn't feel like it matters at all.  Some games that I dominated on my smurf with my Bronze buddies might have been won if I was just another Bronze player who didn't happen to feed that game.  Yet there I go with some obscene KDA to alert whatever safeguards Riot have in place that I'm a smurf in a game I didn't even need to do well in to win.  So then the next games will be more difficult and I'm a Support specialist trying to play Solo lane carries which means there's limits to how much I can do.  Just a theory but it would explain what started happening after my initial success with trying to smurf my buddies out of Bronze.

Karl, I think you're looking at things from a perspective of Platinum jungler who could easily carry himself out of Elo Hell.  It's a different situation for those who are at a high Bronze/Low Silver skill level playing in Bronze.  Sure, assuming they're heavily medicated on Valium so that the nightmare of griefiing and incompetence doesn't affect them badly enough that they quit in frustration like my friends did, they will get out eventually.  Eventually.  In my opinion it takes an exponentially larger number of games for a player who belongs in Silver to get there from 400 MMR than a Gold or Platinum, to the point where it's silly to say that it can be done because blah blah Vulcan logic and blah blah % chance of getting an AFK blah blah.  When I say my friends couldn't get out of Elo Hell by themselves, I meant in <1000 games or before literally going insane, not that it was actually impossible.

on Jun 07, 2014

Karl, I think you're looking at things from a perspective of Platinum jungler who could easily carry himself out of Elo Hell.

EZ = 27 series to hit gold.  Nothing easy about it - just a predictable outcome, eh (eg good enough to eventually overcome rubbish).  Anywho - I don't think I'm missing your point at all, thunder.

But.. I'm also wiped out and going to bed.  Night all!

on Jun 07, 2014

on the other hand: 8-2 Plat #the dream

on Jun 07, 2014

So... hear me out here.  1st - congrats on going on a streak on twisted tree line and immediately hitting plat after 10 games. 

That said, I'm not a fan of the game mode and it apparently is very easy to climb (note - I'm not talking about your skill level in any way btw, I'm literally talking about being able to make a team, play 10 games, and be platinum).  I'm guessing it works that way to due to a lower population. Anyone know if you could hit plat after 10 games on SR in ranked 5's?  If not, it seems to be a direct correlation to population in my mind anyway. 

I looked but couldn't really find any statistics on how many people play twisted treeline.  Anyone able to?  I know dominion has an incredibly low pop - I always assumed twisted treeline was similar.


on Jun 07, 2014

I think one of the points of mine you guys may be missing is that there is actually a significant difference between Bronze V and Bronze V 400 MMR.

Well yes, but how does one get to 400 MMR if they don't consistently play at a bronze V level?  It is essentially inconceivable that they that low by bad luck, so they have to be consistently playing at a (low) bronze V level for one reason or another (it could very well be a lot of on tilt games as stated earlier).

A lot of solo queue isn't skill level - its not going on tilt too badly after getting a jackass in your game.

Now, I agree that 400 MMR is a pretty deep hole to dig out of (if its early in a season, its probably easier to just start a new account frankly).  But after the reset and promos, my math says that they should have been pretty close to the edge of bronze V.  So it shouldn't have been that unreasonable to get out of bronze V if they consistently play at a silver/high bronze level over the course of say 25-40 games.

on Jun 07, 2014

So... hear me out here.  1st - congrats on going on a streak on twisted tree line and immediately hitting plat after 10 games. 

We are gold I - we got placed in Gold II and you can't skip to plat.  To be fair, after murdering a lot of teams to start with, we are playing a lot of harder matches now that our MMR has gone up (a lot of diamond players, and we played a team with 3v3 challenger players last night).

on Jun 07, 2014

ah ok.  What is it, 5 matches to be placed?

on Jun 07, 2014


My IRL buddies played in two separate phases.  When they started out they all couldn't care less and inadvertently made a lot of people in their ranked games miserable on their way to 400 MMR, so maybe in a way they deserved what happened to them.  They took a break from the game and when they came back they watched LCS, took my advice on Runes/Masteries, learned new roles, etc and didn't take them long to become much better players but still stuck at the very bottom of the MMR ladder.  

As far as starting up new accounts, the guys are my age so have plenty of disposable income, but not enough where they really wanted to say goodbye to accounts that had every MF skin and stuff.  I told them not to worry and that they didn't need to make new accounts because there would be new placement matches for Season 4 and all their problems would be gone.



I just meant I didn't think that you and Karl truly understood how bad things get between when you reach Bronze V and when you keep losing until you don't have any MMR left to lose.  That's where the guys end up who actually try to lose every game for their team.  My one friend actually started playing again and we had a few games last night. He's gotten to his Bronze III promos but it's still really bad even there.  "Wow... I don't think I've ever played a 4v4."  "Oh really?  I play in 4v4's all the time."

I don't consider Karl to have been stuck in Elo Hell when he was struggling to get from Silver I to Gold V anymore than myself, or you when you were struggling to get from Bronze I to Silver V.  We all have valuable skillsets... ones that are much more valuable in games with competent players.  None of us are "I'll go Top and be a pentakill hypercarry machine." type of players so last season we relied too much on our teams not sucking and so struggled at certain MMR levels and then thrived later.  Well, more you and Karl as far as the thriving later thing went to be fair.

However, even if you take Karl who barely ever solo lanes down to Bronze V I think he'd dominate enough games to get himself up to Silver rather quickly.

on Jun 07, 2014

However, even if you take Karl who barely ever solo lanes down to Bronze V I think he'd dominate enough games to get himself up to Silver rather quickly.

Challenge accepted.  Karl, please tank your account until you hit bronze V. 

on Jun 07, 2014

I personally did an experiment about the MMR, elo and how deep you can go. On my smurf I played very not seriously (not obviously intentionally throw, but playing as a something very low skill level). And believe me, bronze 5 games are difficult to lose. It requires a pretty strong effort, when your MMR is that low to achieve that. Lolnexus website was showing calculated team mmr of something like ~150, lolking showed like 400 if I remember correctly (it doesn't show below that no matter how many more times you lose). Other websites also were showing weird things. Additionally queue times were like ~10 minutes. So I guess that was the real bottom. Players play like normally, but... They afk, have bad connections more often. As for the rage... It appears not that often actually, but when it does, the player often quits. The most obvious thing is bad calls, bad decisions. They don't do much. Win a team fight and back to base even if all enemies are dead. They drag games very long. People tend to be more scared. Not dive to kill, not give the finishing blow if you yourself are low. Missing skill shots all over the place. I couldn't lose some of those games literally, because if at least one silver or high bronze level player was on my team (talking about skill level, not rank) it was an easy win for us. He'd carry and you can even afk. You'd still win, because enemies will not know what to do about an aggressive player.

If you intend to climb up from that after going so low. You can just play however you wish. Most likely you will win. I am not sure who even plays there at that level... The bronze 5 MMR is something about 700, I think. To climb to that it's easy. After that players get slightly better, but still... If any of you were in bronze, you'd see the significant difference. Might not carry all, but most are easy.

Soon after my experiment RIOT changed the ToC or something... That players shouldn't intentionally play below their skill. Like pros showing climb from bronze to diamond, so I stopped that experiment as well. Still it was interesting to see differences.

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