Read This To Prevent Loss Streaks

If you are reading this, you fall into one of the following categories:

1) You feel it in your soul that you are about to go on a HARDCORE loss streak due to a few rough losses.

2) You are going well for once and don’t want to ruin all those gains with a loss streak.

3) You are in the middle of a loss streak and want to prevent yourself from dropping further.

EVERYONE on their solo queue journey has experienced a brutal loss streak at one point or another. As we can all agree, they are not fun. Let’s break down how to go about reducing the chances of having to endure another one of these soul wrenching experiences.

The first thing we need to do is become aware of the signs of a potential loss streak. We need to become our own ‘doctors’, such that we are aware of the ‘symptoms’.

These symptoms can differ from person to person, but usually are made up of one or more of the following…

1) A few rough losses or ‘frustrating’ games, followed by statements that overemphasize the significance of factors that are out of your control. For example…

“Why do I always have 2 losing side lanes?”
“My bot just ints at lvl 3 every game”
“I keep getting champs like LB support on my team”
“I always get the shitty jungler”
“I just had a 3 block with 3x 30% losses”
“I just have auto loss after auto loss game”
“My team keeps running it down every game”

What is occurring here :

If you hear statements along these lines from yourself or others, then it is a sign that they are falling into the victims mentality.
They are not getting in-depth enough into the review and as a result, failing to see how they contributed to the losses.

Whenever I look at VODS from people who share these concerns, I’ll often see the following errors:

– Playing the early waves wrong resulting in your jungler getting double scuttled
– Poor quality resets allowing the enemy to get tempo and impact sides (failing to isolate the lane)
– Blowing flashes to ganks through poor warding and leaning, resulting in loss of pressure and as a result, side lanes dying
– Not giving/trading objectives in order to buy time for scaling
– Not saying NO to fights and compensating left right and center

What do I recommend :

YOU MUST get into the review, use a friend or other MLA member or myself! Don’t be afraid to ask for help. The more specific your questions the better. And if you are completely unsure, that’s what the coaching sessions are for.

Shift your language from victim statements to ‘player’ statements, whereby we are taking maximum responsibility.

Statements/questions like this :

“What could I have done to prevent my jungler from dying on that scuttle?”
“Was there a way for me to foresee that bot dive?”
“Could I have got to that fight faster?”
“Was there an alternative setup such that I can take better quality trades?”
“Was there a way for me to have pinged this play off earlier?”

When you start to seek solutions instead of excuses, the world becomes your oyster.

2) Beginning to blame champion pool/META for reasons you are losing each game.

Leading to statements such as :

“It’s impossible for me to win games in this meta”
“X champions are just way too strong”
“Y items are so weak nowadays”
“What’s the point of playing versus ‘x’ champion”
“Riot are ‘x,y,z’”

What is occurring here :

These statements are often a sign that the player has lost focus of their process, and have failed to recognize that a lack of champion mastery and matchup understanding is holding them back.

Unless you are already at the very top of the ranked system (D1+), then META/champ pool doesn’t really mean that much.

Now, I will note that there definitely can be truth to the above statements. But it’s the behavior up until that point that determines whether that person WILL or WON’T go on a loss streak.

IF that player has already tried everything they can to adapt their gameplay through alternating setups, trying differing lane paces, alternating the style they trade or even the way they itemize throughout the game, THEN the player generally won’t go on a loss streak. They will simply just lose more than they win, and end up shifting/alternating champ pools.

But 95% of the time, the player has not exhausted every other avenue, and has used the meta as an excuse to cover up their poor review/learn/evolve process. In which case, they will inevitably jump ship to other champs and lose a bunch on 17 differing champions OR tilt queue for the next few weeks.

What do I recommend :

You MUST begin to pinpoint the matchups you struggle within or even the comps you struggle against, and bring these to reviews. In which case we can identify ways we can work around it, OR work on skills that will allow you to thrive in that new meta.

Alternatively if it’s a pure matchup mental block, then literally 1v1ing against that champ with other players from the MLA is the way to go.

If you are genuinely struggling over a long period of time, and this wasn’t the first meta/patch your pool has been exposed, then it might be a sign you need to take a few weeks to expand your pool on a secondary account. This must be approached in a healthy way through me or another experienced coach.

3) Constant emphasis put on the wins and losses of each block. Leading to a poor relationship with the game.

One of the tell-tale signs that a loss streak is inevitable is when players repeatedly emphasize the success or non-success of a particular block.

Statements like this are generally a sign:

“I just had another 0-3 block”
“I finally had my first 3-0 block”
“I am up 20LP from my last block”
“I won all my games today”

Any statement that is tied to the result over and over. Also goes hand in hand with statements tied to win rates etc.

What is occurring here :

Generally this means that the player is less concerned about the learnings/improvement/process/other personal metrics, and more about the LP itself.

Now in moderation this is perfectly normal, at the end of the day we are all aiming for a specific rank. BUT, obsession over the amount of wins and losses in a block will cause serious damage to your relationship with solo queue.

Overtime we drift further and further away from the behaviors that lead to wins and losses. Before you know it, they are playing 3 blocks without any learning objectives, and are deeming specific games ‘failures’ just because they lost even though they played well OR deeming games ‘great’ because they won even though they played poorly.

The further away we get from the details inside of the review, the closer we become to tying our success to wins and losses and forget about becoming a better or worse league player.

And inevitably, once you start losing games, if your process isn’t rock solid, the supporting structure is non-existent. Nothing will prevent that HUGE loss streak.

What do I recommend :

You must be aware of what makes a game successful for you, given your learning objectives/current level of play.

If you wanted to improve upon your warding and leaning as well as avoiding ganks, and did this effectively even though you LOST, then that is amazing. Yes, in the short term it sucks, but it is the way you improve at League.

Avoid allowing your emotions to take control over a rough loss or win. Get into the review and get specific about the areas that concern you, this way you will naturally ask yourself higher quality questions and inevitably avoid conversation about wins or losses.

Our goal at the end of the day is to increase/improve upon the skills/behaviours that create leads/wins, rather than the wins themselves.

“When you start thinking about winning, you stop thinking about doing your job” – John Wooden

4) Setting overly high expectations on yourself. When a few losses start to add up and you are on the brink of demoting, the pressure gets too much, leading to a toxic tilt spree.

It’s great to set short term goals that are realistic and actionable, but when you start to set these expectations that are overly ambitious, especially in a short time frame, that’s when the pressure really starts to hurt people’s process.

What is occurring here :

I think it’s great to have a north star, something that excites you. But if this ‘north star’ isn’t paired with a realistic short term goal, then it will eat you alive.

I have seen time and time again, players who have a minor setback whether it was due to a rough meta for their pool or temporarily going backwards while learning a new skill, or even just having a lot going on in their private lives, absolutely LOSE the plot and spiral out of control.

I often question why this is occurring since the initial drop was so small, and the responses are always so similar…

“I was so close to my goal and look at me now…”
“I was going so well, then I started getting worse”
“My goal is just so far away…”
Etc etc.

What do I recommend :

If you feel yourself falling into this category, then you MUST begin to accept reality and reflect. Literally take time out of your day to reflect on your current level of play and what has been going on in your life.

You will often find that there is a logical explanation for that minor drop in play, you usually know it as well, but are too emotional/delusional/busy/preoccupied to bring it to the surface.

It is perfectly natural to slump temporarily, that is the way competition works. We have our good days and our bad days. If we are focused on the long term process, asking high quality questions and actively reflecting, nothing will catch us off guard too much.

We should also look into setting a new goal that is more tied to reality, given the current meta, constraints of your schedule/real life pressure and your current learning objectives.

Final thoughts :

It seems to me, the more time we take to reflect on our solo queue journey, asif we were actually journaling with ourselves, the lower the chances we go on a big loss streak.

This requires self awareness, not just of our behaviour, but of the WHY we are acting the way we are.

Before you press that queue up button one more time, ensure you know WHY you are doing it and what you are looking to get out of that experience.

Goodluck MLA fam <3