Finding the “One” – A Guide to Choosing Your Main Champion in League of Legends

Finding the “One” – A Guide to Choosing Your Main Champion in League of Legends
Video how to choose champions in league of legends

With over 150 champions in the game, choosing your main is as difficult as trying to convince Jhin to abandon the number four. Well, I’m overexaggerating just a little there – let’s be real: nothing will break Jhin’s devotion – but finding the “one” is truly the epitome of looking for a needle in a haystack.

That’s why today, I’ve gathered some handy tips and tricks that’ll help you narrow down your options. In no time, you’ll be entering the Rift with a new main and newfound love for the game.

What’s Fun for You?

Obviously, you’ll need to pick a champion that’s fun for you. There’s no point maining a champion purely because it looks flashy or because it’s strong in the current meta. If you find the champion’s playstyle utterly boring, you won’t enjoy playing them, and you won’t be motivated to learn the ins and outs of their kit. After all, practicing the champion will simply feel like a chore.

Of course, figuring out what you find fun can be a challenge in itself, especially if you’re new to League and haven’t had the opportunity to explore all the various playstyles. In this situation, I recommend considering what types of playstyles you’ve enjoyed in the past.

For example, if you always stuck to tanks in previous games, you’ll no doubt enjoy vanguards (offensive tanks) like Ornn and wardens (defensive tanks) like Braum. Alternatively, if your go-to playstyle has always been an assisting or healer one, your best bets are probably support champions like Janna, who protect their teammates from the backlines.

Ultimately, playing a variety of champions is the way to go though. The more champions you play, the better understanding you’ll have of what’s fun and what resonates with you. If you haven’t unlocked many champions, make sure to exploit the weekly free champion rotation – it always offers up champions of different roles, playstyles and difficulty.

Get ARAM’in

If you do own a large number of champions, ARAM is a great game mode to explore them all, since it gives you a random unlocked champion to play each round. ARAM games are also much more fast-paced. They let you level up and buy items faster, giving you a quicker means of gaining an understanding of every champion’s abilities, power spikes and playstyle.

Plus, as it’s all randomized, you’ll end up playing champions you never even thought of playing before, whether because they simply slipped your mind or because you had an assumption you wouldn’t enjoy their playstyle. You never know, you might fall in love with a champion you thought you would absolutely hate. As the saying goes, don’t judge a Teemo by its shrooms!

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What Roles Do You Play?

It’s important to also factor in what role(s) you play. Every champion is better suited to certain roles than others (unless you’re determined to prove the meta wrong).

Considering this, a good way to narrow down your options is to look solely at the champions that can be viably played in your main role. Tier list sites like u.gg will tell you which champions are played where, and more importantly, how strong they currently are.

Speaking of which, if you want to explore a new role as well – and not just a new main – I’ve got a dedicated guide for that, which you can find here.

What Is Your Goal?

It’s also worth considering what your actual goal is. Are you a casual player, or are you playing League to climb up the ranked ladder? If it’s the latter, you will probably need to take into account what’s strong in the meta.

It might also be a good idea to avoid mechanically difficult champions with a high skill cap; the harder a champion is to master, the slower you’ll see progress.

Champion’s Release Date – Is a Rework Planned?

Riot is putting out rework after rework at the moment, so it’s best to avoid really old champions (next up is Udyr!).

Champion Ban Rates

This factor is most relevant if you’re intending to take your main champion to ranked – there’s no point maining a champion that’s going to be perma-banned. Champions with high ban rates are usually those that are powerful in the current meta, are played a lot, or have a “tilt-inducing” kit (aka brimming with harass and CC.) You can find out the ban rates for every champion here. Stick to those that have a ban rate lower than 10%.

Now, it goes without saying that ban rates will change as the meta changes; a patch might nerf a champion to smithereens, or buff them to the extent they have a 90+% ban rate (throwback to Kassawin).

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However, even despite the fact that the meta is ever-changing and often unpredictable, there are a few telltale signs that a champion with a low ban rate is likely a safe pick. These include:

  • A fairly low play rate
  • Consistently been mid-tier throughout the season
  • Hasn’t been buffed or nerfed recently, or has only received minor changes

Versatility

Versatility isn’t a must, but it certainly helps when it comes to competitive play. By versatility, I mean champions that can be viably played in different roles (in other words, not Yuumi!).

The main advantage of a versatile champion is that it helps mitigate the damage auto-fill will do to your LP and soul. Rather than having to play a champion you’re not overly familiar with – and will likely go 0/5 on – you can simply stick to your main and focus on figuring out the macro side of things.

Versatility is particularly important right now since Riot have just released the queue dodging changes, upping the penalty players receive.

Aesthetics – Is Eye Candy Important?

Hey, there’s no shame in being won over by flashy plays, gorgeous skins and smooth animations! If aesthetics matter a lot to you, it’s a good idea to check out champion spotlights to gain a feel of their looks and movements. Some champions, especially the older ones, have pretty clunky animations.

It’s also worth checking out the various skins on offer – while many champions (ahem, Ahri and Lux) are blessed with an almost endless amount of stunning skins, others aren’t so lucky.

Get Binge-Reading LoL Lore

Knowing the backstory behind champions – and understanding why their kit is designed in such a way – might just help you find the “one.” After all, what better way to connect with them?

Every champion has a detailed lore about their history, personality and what they’re fighting for. You might find that you share certain traits with them, or fall in love with their brave heroism and hilarious antics.

I personally fell in love with Rakan – my main champion – because of his lore; I admire the pure love and commitment he has for Xayah, and how he sticks by her side through thick and thin. I also adore his charming personality and determination to show mortals the true beauty in magic.

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You can check out every champion’s lore here.

Watch League of Legends Streamers or Pro Games

Why judge a champion’s capability based on those in your elo? Watching professional games and streamers will give you a much better idea of what every champion is capable of, as well as how to properly play them. You might find out that a champion you decided wasn’t the right fit for you – based on how your ally inted on them – is actually the perfect fit when played right.

Don’t Rush Things

Finding your main champion can’t be done in a day’s work. It can take several weeks, months or even years (yes, years!!!). You might also change your mind as your tastes change and your understanding of the game grows.

When I first started playing League, I was determined to main Renekton since I felt he was the “one” for me and would truly help me climb out of the “bronze abyss.” I stacked up over 200k mastery points on him and actually played him for months on end.

However, I then discovered Rakan, and realized that Renekton was never actually the “one.” While I definitely enjoyed Renekton, Rakan just feels so much more fun, exciting and thrilling. I could play him nonstop for weeks and still never get bored of him.

In other words, picking out your main is something that takes a heck of a lot of time, and the likelihood is you’re going to make “wrong” choices at first. And that’s completely okay. In fact, it only serves to make you a better player: the more champions you’re familiar with, the better you’ll know your likes and dislikes, and the better you’ll understand how to play against different matchups.

Don’t rush things, don’t force it, and remember that ultimately you don’t choose your main champion, they choose you.

Finding the “One” to Conquer the Rift With

Finding your main champion is exceptionally difficult, but the tips and tricks above should give you a better idea of which champions could fit the bill. With time, dedication and plenty of exploring – and I mean plenty – you’ll soon find the “one’ and be conquering the Rift (and the ladder) with them.