How to Climb in League of Legends Solo Queue

At some point, we’ve all felt that we have been stuck in ELO hell and that everything goes against us in our climb. However, most people don’t actually think about how to climb and instead grind out their time committing the same mistakes, over and over again.

Photo of author

Aos Síth

What we will go through are not quick fixes and are mainly gameplay oriented. They require practice and playing extensively, but it involves different paths one can take to climb faster in League. But of course for some people the fastest way to improve in solo queue is fixing one’s mental state when playing. Hopefully having a specific gameplay goal can keep the tilt away a bit.

Key Takeaways on How to Climb in Solo Queue

  • Find a playstyle that fits your strengths and what you enjoy
  • There are several ways of winning consistently, through roaming, lane domination, macro and teamwork.
  • Play with a style in mind and play not just to win, but to achieve your own goals of improvment
  • Be patient with your teammates and results — play for the long-term climb

Master Cheeser: Win by Hands

This is where you master a high mastery champion that can snowball like Irelia/Yasuo/Katarina/Kai’Sa. This involves focusing on mechanics and matchups. Research matchups to see what you need to do to win lane or survive lane. Use the training tool to train specific mechanics that will give you those leads and give you much higher kill pressure. For example with Irelia you can train doing Q + autos, fast or hidden E casts and trying to do her full combo as fast as possible.

Most high mastery champions have mechanics that will massively increase your damage output or movement. Learning how to do such mechanics consistently will give you a massive advantage in duels. This playstyle is good to focus on if you enjoy practicing mechanical skill, outplaying opponents and if you are bad at teamplay.

The pros of this playstyle is that you can snowball and solo carry a game. Downside is that even if you crush your lane, these types of champions can have a very hard time in teamfights and unless you influence other lanes, you alone have to carry. And with bounties, the opponent can get back in the game by killing you. So, you’ll want to make sure to also help get either the Jungler or a sidelane to get ahead, not just stomp your own lane.

Learning Macro: Be Smarter than the Opponents.

If you are not confident in your hands and don’t have a duo, don’t fret, learning macro concepts is a pretty sure way of improving your game bit by bit and winning more and steadily climb.

Just by learning how to manipulate the waves and when to recall you can easily accrue big cs leads all the way up to diamond. This is not as flashy a way to win more games, but just being stronger than the opponent for free will win you more games. You can both play scaling champions and bully champions that force the opponent out of lane. If you control your lane you can much more easily aid allies and take advantage of opponents’ inting.

Playing Duo: Friends are the Greatest Ally

Playing as two and playing roles that can help each other, like jungle and solo laner or duo bot. You have a massive advantage in the 2 vs 2 and you should be able to use this to snowball. You need to learn to communicate effectively and what you can do in addition to the typical solo queue play. It may be the mid laner covering an invade, Jungler covering the mid pushing in, mid and jungle taking objectives or roaming bot.

If you are looking for likeminded players to play with, look no further than our zleague app.

Influencing the Map: Trust Your Fellow Player

This is the method of solo queue gods like Dopa with Twisted Fate, but its extreme has also effectively been done by the infamous Korean solo queue player ady who plays picks like Taric top and roams. This style is intrinsically linked with the macro style — but it heavily plays around getting your team ahead instead of yourself. 

Screenshot from

This is not something we would recommend to start off with as it’s perhaps the most complex one — knowing how to manipulate your lane to be able to roam without losing too much. You also need to understand what advantages you can give your team are important enough for you to be missing out on resources yourself.

But it is worth keeping in mind that on average, if you get your teammates ahead you will win more games than not. It is much more effective than what you intuitively think. You just need a good dose of the monk’s mentality to take you through the games where they throw the leads you give them.

The easiest way is just to play global champions with teleport like Shen, Galio, Twisted Fate and use certain timings to influence the map and clearly communicate your intentions with pings. This still requires a lot of macro understanding and the big problem with this is that it will be less effective on lower levels, it is mostly useful for climbing in platinum+.