What is a Mid Laner?
A mid laner has to require decent amount of game knowledge and understanding that you have the capability to impact every lane. Many players has been going into the middle lane just to look for 1v1 and show dominance that they are better but without realizing every other lanes in their team are collapsing. Without the pressure of a mid laner, the team can be vulnerable to the enemies. The thing that the other laners couldn't do are the amount of pressure that can be provided and contributed by the mid laner.
As a mid laner, you can control the middle lane and influence the rest of the game. No matter how aggressive or defensive you are, it's important to know how to control the mid lane and control the game. The difficulty of a mid laner isn't just because of the 1v1 and skill-match up, it's more about rotating and taking advantages to help securing a victory for you and your team.
Which Hero to pick in the Mid Lane?
There are so many different type of heroes in Arena of Valor but not all of them are suitable for being a mid laner. How do you know if a hero is suitable for the mid lane? It's simple. Any hero (such as Mages, but never marksmen) that has decent crowd controls, mobility,good base damage, long ranged abilities to clear minion wave and can scale well into the mid or late game. Why? As a melee hero, it's not very effective as most enemy mid laners are ranged type hero, you would get harassed, poked and pushed into the tower range which ruin the entire pressure of the mid lane. It would give advantage for the enemies to roam and gank your teammates. Thus, you will have to go outside the tower range further than a ranged hero does, which might put yourself very vulnerable to ganks from either the top or bottom side.
Playing heroes with less complex and difficulty will give you the opportunities to carry the game easier. Some heroes are really hard to play which takes time to master it completely, you would not bring the full potential of that hero. The thing about MOBA games is "there are always meta picks". Every major patch, some heroes get nerfed and buffed accordingly. Some of the heroes are the "best" picks and some are the "worst" picks in the mid lane. It's important to have understanding of the meta if you are aiming to climb the ranks. It would be highly recommended to master/main at least 2-3 heroes for a lane or role.
Now that you have chosen your hero and knowing who are your enemies. There are plenty of things to know before entering the game. You can think and ask yourself the following questions after you have picked your heroes, or during the loading screen.
- What type of hero are you playing? Are you an assassin or a harasser?
- Can you play aggressive against the enemy mid lane? Who is stronger in the early and late game? -Understanding the enemies' hero damage and abilities are important to know how to counter it.
- Is it possible to solo-kill the enemy laner?
- At which level your hero is the strongest? For example - Joker gets a really high damage ultimate at Level 4 where he could try and harass the enemies and finish them off with ultimate.
- Who are the opponent's jungler and ally's jungler? Which side are stronger when it comes to 2v2? How are they gonna gank you and how to prevent it?
- Should I flank, dive or poke in a teamfight?
- At which item is your powerspike? Knowing when to play aggressively and passively.
How to Play in the Mid Lane?
Trading and Harassing
Knowing the base damage of enemies' and your own hero can lead yourself into an advantage by trading. What is trading? Two heroes attacking each other in the lane with their basic attacks and abilities to put pressure into the lane. It's important to know the patterns of the enemies' abilities such as their range, damage, etc. and you can even harass the enemy without taking damage. Why you should trade and harass? Whenever you won in a trade, the enemies has to back off into their Altar of Life to regenerate their health. At this point, you can look for opportunity to gank, taking objectives or taking the tower down. If they don't back off, it could be an easy kill for you and your team.
What is All-In? - Using every abilities and spells available to burst their health down, trying to get a kill or make them low enough for them to back off. Either way it's still a win-win situation if you have successfully killed them or forced the enemy laner to back off unless you get caught by the enemy jungler.
A risky move especially when the enemy jungler is missing. High risk, high reward. If you are confident that you can outdamage the enemy mid laner, you can do it. A mid laner requires good knowledge of the game, not just being good at mechanics and micro plays. Understanding what your hero and the enemies' hero is capable of before going All-In.
There are so much to do as a mid lane to impact the game, especially during the laning phase.
As a good mid laner, you need to do the following:
- Clearing the minion wave, missing 1 or 2 minion would slow down your item and level progress.
- Provide vision for your teammates without getting caught, roam around the river and even the enemy jungle camps but not too deep. If lucky, you could even find them clearing the jungle and you can try to steal the jungle with your long-ranged abilities. It would tilt the enemy jungler so much and slow down their progression.
- Help in defending Bottom or Top lane towers if needed.
- Set up a gank.
- Provide aid to your teammates when needed. (Objectives such as towers or Abyssal Dragon and Teamfights)
- Harassing your enemies and gain advantage.
- Provide information for your team when you roam around. (Enemies missing, enemy moving to top or bottom side, etc.
- (OPTIONAL) Solo-kill the enemy mid laner, winning the lane in 1v1.
- Keeping an eye out on the passage between enemy jungle and your own early game to prevent the other teams jungler to go in and steal your buffs. Also, you look at the opposite way from where your jungler starts.
- Don't steal your own ally jungle, especially in the early game.
- Whenever the enemy mid lane is missing, try to find out what they are up to.
- Don't roam when the minion wave is near, missing out a few minions is really bad. Unless your team really need your help.
- Don't blame the jungler when you lost your lane.
- Focus more onto macro plays than your mechanics. For example, map awareness, rotation, roaming, etc.