Why do you like League of Legends? An NACS-Bound Player’s Perspective
Hello from the other side, Angelo “Misleading” from Zenith eSports here!
While working with different players and teams in the League of Legends eSports scene, Amateur to LCS, I have the privilege of meeting unique characters and personalities. Trey “Ensign Ledo” Grigsby is one of those persons with an unrestrained amount of passion towards League of Legends as a game and as an eSport. It’s not uncommon for players, casual or professionals, to feel annoyed, frustrated, or demotivated when they run into unlucky streaks in League of Legends (e.g. poor lane matchups, poor decision-making, poor team synergy, losing streaks). “Ensign Ledo,” however, has conditioned himself to look at the brighter side of things and it has contributed to his professional development as a player and as a person. During our most recent conversation, I asked him a few questions to which his answers were quite invigorating to say the least:
Why do you like League of Legends?
“I love everything about League. I admit that there are times when I get annoyed playing against certain champions or in certain metagames, but I have never felt, in the six years I have played this game, that a certain champion or item needs to be deleted. This game has so much to offer and I just can’t get enough of it.”
It’s confirmed. League of Legends is a dangerous and addictive drug. Someone call The Medic Force.
Not even Teemo? Kappa.
“Not even Teemo. Kappa.”
When did you start playing the game?
“When I first started playing, Renekton was the most recent released champion. I’ll never forget first-release Rumble. THAT was truly overwhelming. *insert Protoss Archon quote here* Yeah, I’ve been through a lot of really imbalanced patches, champion releases, and bugs.
My personal favorite was the Black Cleave Stacking bug. Do you guys remember that? See full item build below:
“I really enjoy the range and variety of champions the game has to offer. On release, Zac, Bard, and Tahm Kench were exciting and innovative champions to explore. They all had a unique feel and mechanic, unlike any champions before them – Zed’s flexible mobility with his shadows, Bard’s ability to allow himself and his team to travel through impassable terrain, and Tahm’s mechanic to eat an ally or enemy. But sometimes, it’s not just about new champion releases. You can find joy playing an old champion with newly released items or you can find joy playing the same one champion over and over.”
Do you only play ranked or do you play normals and ARAMs too?
“I play everything. Riot and the League of Legends community offers TONS of ways to enjoy League of Legends. You can enjoy League by climbing Ranked ladder, alone or with friends on dynamic queue, but if you’re not feeling the grind, you can chill out in some normal games. You can also take it even more casually and throw in some ARAM games where it’s either a non-stop clown fiesta or a enduring game of dodgeball. But if you’re too cool for the game modes Riot provides, you can immerse yourself in the community-created game modes. Have you played Hide and Seek? Or Find the Teemo?”
Have you guys tried playing Ultimate Bravery?
“League of Legends is an endless amount of fun for me. Even if you have a matchup down to a science, there is always a chance that something can go wrong – you may misplay a trade, the enemy jungler may camp you, or your opponent may be better than you in general. Things can also be on the opposite side of the spectrum – you outperform your rival on every single trade, your jungler may give you an exceptional amount of help, or you are objectively better than your opponent. I approach each game as a new challenge; It’s a learning experience that helps me be the best player I can be.”
Since you have had experience working with Challenger-level teams and competing for an opportunity to play in NA-CS, how does it feel to be on the competitive side of League of Legends?
“The competitive side, probably more than anything else, drives my passion for League of Legends. It’s a perpetually evolving system. Team A may be the best team on the current patch, but in the next patch Team B is the strongest team in the circuit. When it comes to individual play. there is no such thing as a perfect player, only a player making the perfects plays. An excellent example is Lee “Faker “ Sang-hyeok. Although it may seem like he is over-hyped to some, there is a reason he is so highly respected “as a god” across multiple regions. He demonstrates high mechanical prowess and mental capacity along with jaw-dropping reflexes during major, widely broadcasted matches. He has fabricated some of the best plays in League – some which are almost unbelieveable and have to be rewatched several times to properly break down what actually happened. His 1v1 fight against Ryu a few years ago was very stimulating (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPCfoCVCx3U).”
I heard you play against scriptors from time to time. What are your thoughts about them?
“I dislike scriptors as much as the next person, but it’s not impossible to beat them. Faker proved it by beating a scripting Karthus in Ranked queue like he was an average player. When it comes to professional versus professional (human versus human) one may make a misplay that leads to the other winning the fight. Scripts, however, do not make errors; They do not miscalculate. If something is possible, scripts will make it happen. They will dodge all avoidable skills and connect every attack or ability used – accounting for movement and leading the target. Even so, Faker still manages to outsmart and outperform the scriptor proving that the human mind is still superior (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kCZlt3jrMUs). What scripts don’t have is the unpredictability of human judgement. The best players in League of Legends take human judgement into account. Hong “MadLife” Min-gi is renowned for predicting Flashes and connecting game changing Death Sentences with Thresh that amateurs would normally miss. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5aaTaJ64wWw)”
What attitude do you have towards the game right now and why?
“I used to be easily irritable and have toxic attitude. I was not just passive-aggressive; I would actively flame people for underperforming. I had my account permanently banned in Season 2 and that consequence pushed me to make a conscious effort to improve my attitude. I had my ups and downs but now, more than ever, I have a positive influence on my games and I tackle each game as an opportunity to grow – a challenge to improve my own skills and squeeze out my full potential.”
“Recently, I played a game where one of the players, in champion select, said, ‘How is everyone doing today? I hope your day is going great! Let’s have a fun, positive game, and get this win.’ Another player chimed in, ‘I like you already. Let’s have a good game guys.’ I know it might not seem like much, but it set the tone for the entire game. I wanted to have a good experience playing with my team. It was established from the start that for the next thirty minutes, we were a team and we would work together to earn that “victory” screen.”
“In the post game lobby, the enemy team was bickering, arguing, pointing fingers at who’s at fault for losing the game – something that happens fairly often after a loss. I realized, after reflecting on it, that the enemy team had just as much of a chance of winning as mine did; The difference between winning or losing could have very well been the attitude of the players. A simple: “How is everyone doing?”
How has your attitude helped you and your experience playing the game?
“As someone who used to be self-centered and have a toxic attitude, making the effort to improve my attitude has had an extremely positive effect on my entire life. I firmly believe that having a positive attitude toward the game and respecting your teammates, no matter who they are or what they have done before, leads to winning more games (and having more fun while doing so). You avoid tilting and distracting your teammates from harassing them and you focus more on yourself, how you can grow, and how you can improve.
What do you recommend players to do to appreciate the game as much as you do?
The best way I can explain my love for League is that I have the same mindset towards it as I do anime.
WARNING! WEEABOO ALERT! Just kidding, I enjoy anime too.
“I keep a MyAnimeList, and I usually grade everything with an 8 or higher. I get criticized by my friends for giving out too many high scores, especially the amount of 10’s, but I have a simple explanation for it: ‘Instead of looking at the flaws they may have, I appreciate each exposition for its own art, animation, music, story, and characters.”
“My advice to other players is to focus on how much the game has to offer; Look for what really makes you happy – be it a certain role, champion, playstyle, or whatever. Also, focus on improving yourself. Being able to notice yourself improving at something is an awesome feeling that you can and will benefit from. It will motivate you and inspire you to chase larger things and take on tougher challenges. The moment you start, you will find yourself leaving behind mediocrity and pursuing excellence in anything and everything you do.”
For every game and every community, there will be people who are unafraid to voice out their concerns. Some will do it in a professional and constructive way while others will do it in the most destructive, harmful, and offensive way possible. I encourage you to be a positive influence in every game you play and in every community you are involved in. Nothing great comes from an unhealthy attitude nor demonstrating undesirable behavior. There is much more to gain by striving to be the best you that you can be. Demonstrate excellence. Actively be a positive role model to others. You will be handsomely rewarded over and over with opportunities network, improve, and develop. At the end of the day, people will envy your outlook and some will even follow in your footsteps. Together we can influence, the League of Legends community, one of the largest gaming communities, our community, to be a the smartest, brightest, most innovative, and hardworking people who exist.
And it starts with you.
Written by Angelo “Misleading” Rodriguez
Assisted by Trey “Ensign Ledo” Grigsby
All images and videos used in this article is the property of their respective creators/owners.