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The Importance of Skill Order in League of Legends

Ozuar March 28, 2013 User blog:Ozuar

I don't know if anyone has noticed this, but with the recent creation of a series of blog posts dedicated to the idea of macro in League of Legends and it's importance to the game, I thought I would bring up another idea that is quite important to a particular player's performance in a game of League of Legends: Skill Order.

By this I do not mean the order in which you cast your spells, but the order in which you advance your skills to their next tier of power upon level up. For many champions and play styles, this is simply "Max Q" or something of the sort. However, when it comes to other champions, skill order is much more important.

Let's look at Nautilus for example, who, when jungled, has an extremely unique skill order. Most jungle champions follow a typical pattern to ensure a successful first clear and early gank. The general concept is to level your clearing and damage skills (Nautilus's Titan's Wrath and Riptide) once or twice early, and then take your ganking skill right before you intend to gank (Nautilus's Dredge Line). However, if you are not playing Nautilus in the jungle, and instead as a tanky support, you would take Dredge Line first. The repercussions for these decisions are massive on the player. Any experienced jungler knows that taking Dredge Line would spell death for jungle Nautilus, and any experienced support would know that taking Titan's Wrath first would lead to a very despicable early game for both you and your carry.

Another of my favorite champions Sejuani, has a decision to make when maxing skills. You would promote Northern Winds after Permafrost to get more damage, and Arctic Assault to get more mobility and ganking potential.

My question to you, oh users of the League of Legends Wiki, is why these decisions are so important. The case with some champions is that picking their skills in the right order can lead to a catastrophic game, whereas picking them in the right order can make the game quite simple, and ensure an easy win for you and your team. Another important question that arises from this is whether or not it should happen this way. Is it good game design to have heavy emphasis put on skill order?

This had just been on my mind recently, and so I decided that I would put it up here for people to bounce their ideas off of. Thanks for reading, good luck in Solo Queue, and have a wonderful day. (gbay99 joke, for fellow fans)

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