It’s not uncommon for players to describe solo queue as: “Literally unplayable, a den for baboons and a hazard to one’s health.” A majority of the community are proficient enough at the game to ascend through the ladder, but when it comes to solo queueing, they fall short; which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Many professional players outright refuse to solo queue. They simply despise the experience and do not believe it is worth the risk. A lot of players are neglecting a certain aspect of Vainglory when they solo queue. This specific aspect leads to a worsened match experience as you are more concerned with your teammates’ skills or your team’s hero composition. While these aspects are important, another equally important aspect is often overlooked: team morale.
Having a high team morale boasts many positive effects, some of which can increase your chances of victory and improve the overall enjoyment of a match.
- Everyone will cooperate. To the detriment of the team, a salty teammate will be less mindful towards other players. A team with high morale will perform at a higher level without internal conflicts. As such, it is relatively simple to overcome this specific obstacle.
- A happy and motivated team will perform at a higher quality than one who is not. High morale mitigates tilt. Without a high morale, your team will not be mentally fit to compete.
- A high morale will make your match more enjoyable. We all have had matches in which everyone was cheery. There were smiles all around and everyone was playing their hearts out. We all have played matches which coincides with the given scenario. Wouldn’t you like to have more matches like that?
How can you increase team morale?
Listed here are strategies that can be beneficial to your team’s morale, and improve the quality of your solo queue matches.
Reinforce positivity with pings, but refrain from using them negatively.
No one enjoys playing with a salty rager who stomps and shouts when something goes wrong. On the other hand, everyone enjoys playing with the player who keeps his cool during the match. If you find yourself face-palming at your teammates with pings, you could be the one negatively affecting the outcome of matches. If your pings do not contribute productively to the team dynamic, do not use them at all.
Instead, use your pings to show appreciation for the accomplishments or plays your teammates make in the match that puts the team in a better position.
- Does the Captain place helpful vision? A good way to show appreciation would be by pinging their scout traps and signaling “Thanks!” Many Captains feel great when the contributions they’ve made to the team are acknowledged.
- Did your teammate pull off an impossible Gold Mine or Kraken steal? This warrants 3 glasses of champagne for the team and a starry-eyed ping. Such an occasion is to be celebrated properly!
- Did you receive a life-saving Vanguard, Fountain of Renewal, or Crucible? Signaling “Thanks!” or a thumbs up would go a long way in showing your ally that their clutch play was appreciated.
Showing appreciation of your teammate’s positive actions motivates them to continue to perform at their highest level of play. Even if it does not win you the game, at least you made someone feel good in that moment. Similarly, if your teammate makes a mistake, do not chastise them. It accomplishes nothing besides lowering your team’s morale. Instead of berating your teammate for targeting the Captain, ping “Go” on the enemy carry. Both messages may communicate the same thing, but the latter one does so in a way that minimizes any unnecessary toxicity in a way the preserves the morale of the team.
However, you should also not be spamming smiley faces. Overusing positive pings can diminish their effectiveness, or even annoy your teammates. Take extra care to show your appreciation in moderation. Balance is key.
Believe it or not, acknowledging misplays can also boost team morale. If an ally misses their Fountain of Renewal and expresses their sadness, you can ping a “Thumbs Up” followed by an “OK” to let them know that it is alright. Recognizing that their team accepts their mistakes mitigates tilt. If your allied Ringo accidentally uses their Hellfire Brew on a lane minion, you should make an effort to downplay that misplay. While something like that can hurt the team later on, having a positive attitude about it can keep spirits up.
Do not let your teammate’s negativity tempt you. In short, do not feed the trolls.
If someone is harassing you with negative pings, mute them and play on! Pinging them will only make things worse between you two, and it annoys the third player caught in-between the conflict. If you mute them, they can vent their frustration without bothering you; unless they decide to troll you directly, which will be the end of their toxicity. When someone trolls you, the last thing you want to do is show them that they are frustrating you. Instead, ignore them and play on. They are wasting their own time and you would be hurting yourself by stressing actions you do not have control over. Try your best not to AFK, as that is what they desire. They want someone else to shoulder the burden of being the blackened. If you do go AFK, they may think trolling is the optimal action in dire scenarios. Remember: Two wrongs do not make a right.
Be there for your teammates. Map awareness and proper rotations are key.
Nothing hurts more than being abandoned by your team. Teams are supposed to work together—do not leave your allies who are in trouble hung out to dry. They will immediately wonder why their team is not helping them. Granted, this does not mean you should venture into the enemy base because your allied Ringo is too intoxicated for his own good. Instead, indicate that you are not following them there, so they do not assume you are backing them up. Often times your allies are appreciative that you came to their aid, though there are more than a few exceptions to this rule. It is better to play dumb as a team than to play intelligently as 3 separate units. The adverse effects of absence during a jungle fight often outweighs the adverse effects of missing a few creeps from that lane wave. Part of the stated adverse effects would be the drop in team morale.
Learning how to manage and maintain the morale of your team is a handy skill to practice on the Fold. I urge you to effectively utilize these tactics to your advantage. It may not only boost your chances of winning, but the quality of your Vainglory experience!