Back to Basics: Closing a Game
Back to Basics is a series of articles to help mid to low ELO players grasp the mechanics required to climb the ladder. In this article, TinyTeemo teaches you about late game decision making, and how to close out if you're winning, or which objectives to prioritize if you're not.
Asas | April 3, 2017 | By TinyTeemo

** Community Opinion Piece



Hello and welcome to Back to Basics, a series of articles meant to help you climb that Ranked ladder and in general improve your gameplay. Please take note that this series will be targeted at players who are at mid to low ELO (I consider Gold and lower to be mid to low elo). In this article, we’ll be looking at the late game options to closing out a game.

-Getting a pick or winning a team fight-

The first condition that would allow you to proceed to your other two win conditions: Baron or Inhibitor.

  • A pick is a kill that costed your team little to nothing. For example, the enemy ADC was caught out of position and killed before he/she could deal any damage to your team.
  • After a pick, this is the best time to get an objective (this applies throughout the game, not just the late game). Objectives include: Dragon/Elder Dragon, Baron, Turrets/Inhibitors.
  • Now the question will be: “But which objective should my team go for?”

BTB CLOSING inhib baron

The key to picking which objective you should go for is how much time do you have? Looking at their timers, you can ask yourself “Do I have enough time to push for this inhibitor, recall, and rush back to defend Baron?”

  • If the answer is Yes: Do it!
    • Break that inhibitor and recall.
    • Rush to Baron and defend it, if they’re not there, you could ward up and start Baron too.
    • If they contest Baron, they’ll fall behind because you have super minions pushing.


  • If the answer is No: Rush Baron!
    • Ward up the area and rush baron.
    • Your team should be able to get out easily with Empowered Recall.
    • Now that you have the Baron Buff, you can siege for the enemy turrets/inhibitors!

BTB CLOSING elder baron

Another question that you might need to ask yourself is: Which is the priority? Baron Nashor or Elder Dragon?

The first thing you need to do is ask yourself: Do they have in total two or more of Infernal or Mountain Drakes? Are you losing or behind on experience?

  • If the answer is Yes: Prioritize Elder Dragon.
    • You need to deny them Elder Dragon because it will buff their Infernal/Mountain Drake buffs.
    • You get bonus EXP for slaying Elder Drake if your team is lower leveled than the enemy. (+25% EXP per average level difference)
    • Your lowest leveled team member(s) will get an additional amount of bonus EXP. Yes, this experience bonus stacks with the one mentioned above.
  • If the answer is No: Prioritize Baron Nashor
    • Giving the enemy Elder Dragon is not a big advantage because they do not have Infernal/Mountain Drake.
    • You are ahead and would rather push down turrets/inhibitors.

And there you have it! I hope this article will help you make better decisions after reaching the late game.

Thanks for reading and good luck on the Rift.


Back to Basics directory

  1. Ganks 101
  2. Splitpushing
  3. Closing a Game – Baron or Inhibitor?

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