The Top Lane is one of the least eventful lanes in League of Legends. Despite being such a passive place on the rift, the Top Lane plays an important role in helping the team achieve advantages in terms of macro and teamfighting. A lot of players like to play in the top lane because it’s like a secondary version of the mid lane where you can play carries but for those that like to play for the team, here are some Top Lane tips and tricks that will help you secure advantages during the laning phase.
Importance of the Laning Phase For Top Laners
The Laning Phase secures every advantage that a player can get in order to set up for the mid game. While the laning phase doesn’t impact the late game too much for the top laner or for their team, it’s still important to secure an early lead so that they’ll be able to become relevant in important situations. Some of the top lane tips and tricks that we’re about to show you won’t just come in handy in the laning phase but might also prove useful during the later stages of the game.
Top Laners often have the most boring laning phase because it doesn’t involve a lot of fights and ganks are pretty rare in higher ELOs. Since a lot of players prefer to play tank champions or utility champions in the top lane over hypercarries, there are very few things that players can do to secure a late game advantage. When players do choose to play hypercarries, the entire playstyle changes which you can’t really find in this guide.
The Most Useful Top Lane Tips and Tricks
The Top Lane isn’t as gamebreaking as the other roles but you’re expected to bring some stability to the team. Playing great teamfighting champions or heavy frontline tanks can be a really big help. There are other top lane tips that players can benefit from and here are some examples that will really carry you a long way in League of Legends. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced veteran, here are some of the best top lane tips and tricks for you.
1. Minimize Fighting
The goal of the top laner is to soak pressure and avoid getting the enemy champions ahead. Fighting and trading isn’t necessarily something that you can avoid totally but it’s something that players can minimize during the laning phase. When playing a tank vs tank matchup, players shouldn’t worry too much about fighting since it’ll probably be a passive lane. It’s during lanes against other champion types that the enemy tends to be aggressive in securing a lead for themselves.
Minimizing fights doesn’t mean that you don’t fight back. Letting the enemy bully you out of the lane is just as bad as fighting too much since you lose a lot of your advantage by getting forced to recall. To minimize fighting, just don’t posture aggressively but trade back when the enemy tries to make a move. Defensive trading is advantageous because you always have extra minions to help you deal damage. Put them low enough that they’ll be too afraid to start a fight.
2. Always Ward the Red Side Top Tribrush
The red side top tribrush is the most used gank route for sneaky junglers and mid laners. Whether you’re starting blue side or red side, this area should always contain a ward. Obviously, you still want to ward the river brush but a lot of players ignore the strategic importance of the red side top tribrush in League of Legends. If you’re red side, it’s a good idea to place a control ward but if you’re blue side, a regular vision ward should suffice.
By placing wards on the red side top tribrush, you’ll also see if the enemy tries to place their own vision in that area. It can be a great source of gold but players should never sacrifice getting 15/30 gold when the wave is currently crashed so that you don’t lose any minion gold as a result. Once you secure vision in this area, you’ll never have to worry about getting a surprise gank from the enemy jungler ever again because you’ll constantly be a few steps ahead of the enemy.
3. Retain Teleport Advantage
Teleport advantage is an important thing to have as a top laner. Throughout the game, fights will be happening around the map which might instantly decide the direction of the game. Being able to provide backup to another player may prove to be a game-winning move especially in the bottom lane. However, top laners take a while to walk from their lane to another side of the map so the only thing that they can do to help their allies is to teleport to their location when the fighting starts to get heated.
To retain teleport advantage, it all comes back to avoiding unnecessary fighting in the top lane so that you aren’t forced to recall when the wave is pushing against your tower. That doesn’t mean that you’re willing to lose CS just to save your teleport. Do everything in your power to push the enemy wave into their turret so that you have enough time to walk back into lane and meet up with a minion wave that’s push back towards you without hitting the tower.
4. Learn How to Freeze the Lane
Freezing The Wave is an advanced strategy that players need to learn early on. Learning how to freeze the wave essentially helps you achieve all of the top lane tips above. Freezing the wave is most common in the top lane and is one of the most important skills that you need to learn before you can compete against higher ELO players in League of Legends. Once you’ve mastered how to freeze a wave, the laning phase becomes an easy way for you to put the enemy significantly behind in terms of gold and EXP.
In addition, never leave the wave in a way that allows your enemy to freeze it against you. Once you allow the enemy to take control of the wave, you’ll slowly bleed out in terms of resources because you can’t get gold via the laning phase. To break the wave, simply deal enough damage to the entire wave even if you can’t kill the minions so that the allied minions will do the rest of the work for you. To avoid this from happening, make sure to recall or push the wave until it crashes at the enemy turret.
5. Be Ready to Swap Lanes with the ADC
This is pretty much optional but a good and selfless way to secure the advantage for your team. There are times when the allied ADC and Support break the bottom lane turret early. Once this happens, the top laner should swap lanes with the bot lane duo. This is because playing in a short lane allows them to retain more safety and also the chance to break an additional turret/plates will put them even more ahead in terms of gold to carry the game at a later stage.
Top Laners either have more mobility, need less resource, or are designed to split push so they can survive longer lanes. ADCs are extremely fragile and are a valued target for the enemy team so they can’t allows themselves to go beyond their side of the map. This also means that you’re sacrificing your own safety by playing on a riskier lane so be sure to play it safe so that you don’t attract the attention of the enemy team and give them a free kill in the process.
6. Never Walk Into the River
Unlike the other lanes, top laners have the most difficult time escaping when they are caught out in the river. Players might be tempted to check if the top side Scuttle Crab is still alive or the Rift Herald is being taken by the enemy jungler but walking in through the river can be a dangerous risk. Since Top Lane and Junglers usually have a lot of CC or assassination potential and mobility, it’s really easy to get caught in the middle of the river only to give out a free kill to the opponent.
When checking the status of objectives, it’s better to walk through your side of the jungle and taking a little peak or drop a ward over the wall. The enemy jungler and top laner will most likely leave you alone even if they see you in the position. As additional top lane tips and tricks, you should also be ready to help your jungler in case something dangerous happens in the river. When your allied jungler is near, it’s better to stand near the river entryway so that you’ll always be the first to respond.