You'll typically start at the Damage (Red) buff camp. Help the mage clear it, then head to the Void (Purple) buff camp. Finish the camp w/ your Support, take the buff, and head to lane.
By the time you reach the minions, they will already be fighting each other. Clearing this first wave is a race between you and the enemy, as whoever clears first will automatically gain an advantage, which can be used to poke and pressure the enemy. Taking early damage can put people on the defensive and can mentally be the first step in dictating who will dominate the laning phase. It also can force the early and higher use of potions, depleting the enemy of their sustain. This can then lead to an earlier first-back, which means even more pressure and a lead in farming XP and gold.
If you find yourself out-pressured, back off without taking too much poke while concentrating on clearing the wave. If you manage to out-clear your opponent, try to get some poke in on the enemy gods.
After 3 minions die from the second wave, you and your Support should reach level 2. The goal is usually to clear these 3 minions before your opponent does, as gaining your second ability before the enemy can allow for even more pressure. Keep an eye on the positioning of both Supports and the minions' health bars as they will dictate if and how a level 2 fight will happen:
- Winning: you and your support hit lvl 2 first
- Even: both teams hit level 2 at the same time
- Losing: enemies hit level 2 first
You want to know your matchups and which abilities will be gained by your Support and the enemy ADC / Support. Some level 2 abilities won't be a large threat, while others (e.g. Sobek
's Charge Prey
's Frost Breath
) have stun/root/displacement actions that can put the other Duo under immense pressure and lead to an early kill.
In a situation where you win or go even in the level 2 race, and your abilities provide high pressure, you may plan to be aggressive. In this case, your Support will usually be positioned closer to the enemy, behind or next to your front melee minions. If you plan to be aggressive, the moment lvl 2 is reached, your Support will try to go in on the most vulnerable enemy god (though preferably the ADC) by CCing them. At this time, you want to switch targets from the minions to the enemy god. You want the Support to hit the opponent first to draw minion aggro. If your level 2 ability is a movement ability, be cautious about using it aggressively, as your main goal is to survive and gain pressure on your opponent.
In a case where you lose the level 2 race or your Duo's level 2 does not provide strong aggression, you and your Support will want to be positioned defensively, and may even want to fall back out of range behind the archer line. You will be the likely target of the enemy Support, so you need to determine proper positioning if you see them approaching you. If you feel safe enough, you can attempt to finish more minions to reach level 2, otherwise you’re better off backing off to not get CCed and severely poked by your opponents. During the retreat, you'll want to maintain proper range to prevent getting hit by CC, but this can also give you an opportunity to get in a few basic attacks on the enemy Support to dissuade them from continuing to pressure. Your Support may also try to help by drawing aggro, allowing you to do some damage on them and/or retreat. However, they will also not want to take much damage at this point, so don't rely on them to save you.
Note that during this time, it can make it advantageous for the Jungler to rotate for a gank, if the enemy has pushed up near your tower, making their retreat a lengthy distance.
Using Spirit Arrow to clear the wave and apply some damage onto the enemy duo will be your primary objective. Once you hit level 2, you can start applying solid zoning pressure by using the Broken Weave created by Back Flip near the minion waves. The added damage from hitting the weave with your Spirit Arrow should allow you to maintain early lane dominance, which you can use to apply pressure and poke the enemy. Even if you don't secure an early kill, dealing damage will force them to use up their potions and back early, helping you gain an early lead.
During the rest of the early game, your primary focus is to farm the waves and secure the Void and nearby camps between waves. Keep a close eye on the positioning of the Supports as fights may be initiated at any time. Also keep an eye on the minimap for possible ganks. In cases that you out-pressure your opponent, you can try and go in to steal camps on their side of the map after clearing minions, but you should only do so when they still have to deal with your wave and are pushed back near or under their tower.
During this phase, the Supports will have usually started to rotate into the Jungle and other lanes, allowing the ADC to farm more efficiently to gain levels and gold. You will find yourself 1v1 against the enemy ADC. Depending on matchups and how the early game went, you can be winning, drawing even, or losing lane. Identify your situation accurately and adjust your playstyle accordingly. Your main goal during this phase is to keep farming, but depending on the situation, you may attempt additional actions.
If you’ve been winning the lane, you can attempt to maintain pressure by outclearing the minion waves and poking with basics and abilities when possible. If you know you’re safe, you can try pushing them back under their tower and forcing them to lose some farm, or damage them enough to force them to back. If you force them to back or you get a kill, you may consider going for the tower or the Gold Fury with teammates. Remember to ward the nearby Jungle to avoid getting ganked when you’re farther away from your tower.
If you’re at a stalemate, you can consider calling for a gank to tip the pressure in your favor, or if you’re not confident in fighting and the enemy has strong poke, focus mainly on continuing to farm.
If you’re losing your lane, and especially if you’re behind in levels, your safest bet is to continue farming as close to your tower as possible to avoid being caught out and ganked.
No matter which situation, be careful during this phase to keep up wards and proper map awareness to prevent being surprised by the enemy Jungler or Support, turning your 1v1 into a 1v2. Also keep an eye on the minimap to see if any fights in the nearby jungle break out; you may consider rotating to try and help your team out. Keep in mind that your main focus is still on farming, so make sure you can get some kills / assists out of it, and won’t die yourself, as this can make you lose your lead or push you even further behind.
Remember that placing Wards will help spot nearby gank attempts, but you can also spot for teammates by triggering your ult but not firing.
Also, with the global ult's stun, you can help set up kills or peel for retreating teammates that are far away, or at the least, force the enemy to use a relic. Don't just use the ult for a kill finisher.
At this point in the game you will be mainly grouping with your team to secure objectives on the map. Sticking together is important in any teamfights.
During teamfighting you want to position yourself in the backline, behind your tankier teammates and at range of your opponents. Your goal during a teamfights is to dish out a lot of damage, and the way you do this is by staying alive as long as possible. To help achieve these goals you can remember the next 3 rules:
- Focus the closest targets in range: During most teamfights your opponents frontliners will try to get into the backline to disrupt their damage or even kill them. The reason you want to focus on closer targets instead of the most damaging targets is that you will be severely out of position if you try to go for the damage dealers, as they often are in the enemy backline. Your goal is to try and be as safe as possible while doing damage, therefore it can be more beneficial to kite/backpedal that solo laner that is trying to kill you.
- Focus the most threatening target: In cases where multiple enemies are trying to attack you, prioritize the enemy that is the highest threat for killing you. So if the Jungler and the Solo Laner are trying to kill you, you will want to try and kill the assassin first as they will kill you more quickly.
- Focus the more easily killable target: If you have 2 targets of roughly equal threat, your best option is to focus on the one that is easier for you to kill, due to either lower health or low to no mobility.
After winning a teamfight (and hopefully killing multiple enemies), your main objectives will always be to focus on objectives. If you’re healthy enough, go after any nearby towers or phoenixes. If enough of your team is healthy and you know the enemy is either dead or is low health and has to retreat to heal, you should prioritize killing the Fire Giant. Be mindful of respawn timers and your health, and don’t overstay trying to push an objective.
Remember that, as an ADC, you typically have lifesteal from items like Devourer’s Gauntlet or Asi
, and you can heal up quickly by attacking minion waves and jungle camps.