A couple weeks ago I posted about my terrible win percentage with the AD carry role. At the time I mentioned a recent game which might shed some light on the subject and I'm finally going to get around to talking about it. I've also been watching a lot of the games in the new spectator mode with an eye towards watching the AD carries. I still don't really know what's going on, but maybe there's a clue hanging around somewhere?
The game in question had a team of Renekton top, Cassiopeia mid, Malphite jungle, Nautilus support, and Kogmaw AD carry against Xin Zhao top, Mordekaiser mid, Lee Sin jungle, Soraka support, and Graves AD carry. I was Lee Sin. Renekton was stomping on Xin Zhao top so I spent a lot of time ganking top and no time at all helping out bottom. On the flip side Malphite spent more time bottom and not much time top. The end result was a relatively balanced game going into the mid game in terms of kills and gold.
We got into a team fight that started with my team standing in a bush that likely had a ward in it. The other team's initiators dove in on Graves. Kogmaw and Cass were left off on their own to attack us while the tanky dudes tried to knock us around. Xin and I quickly got out of the pile and jumped onto Cass. Xin exploded and I managed to finish Cass off. At this point the rest of my team was dead so I ran as fast as I could and barely escaped. End result of the fight? Trading 4 people for Cass. Not the best!
After that fight Soraka started ranting at us. Renekton had completely controlled and dominated Graves and he is our only real source of damage. We need to do a better job protecting him. I'd been operating under the mindset that my goal was to jump onto their real damage dealers myself but clearly that didn't work out so well. So I figured I'd humour my team, defend Graves, and see what happened. The next fight again started with the other team's beefy dudes jumping onto Graves standing in a bush which likely had a ward. I started the fight by shielding him, then kicking Renekton off of him, then slowing Renekton. I shielded Graves a second time and slowed Renekton again. Graves spent the whole time running from Renekton and shooting him. We ended up killing Renekton off while Mordekaiser walked up to Kogmaw and destroyed him. The other bruisers stayed on Graves and I ended up shielding him a third time. He ended the fight at less health than the total damage prevented from shields! (And I'm pretty sure Soraka was just pumping heals into him and exhaust into Renekton.) We ended up 4 for 0ing them. Another team fight engaged on our terms and the game was over.
What clues do I have? Well, letting the other team initiate onto your AD carry is very bad. Protecting your AD carry is good. I'd imagine if some of their tanky dudes with stuns had gone to protect Kogmaw instead of trying to get Graves he wouldn't have died to Mordekaiser and they still would have won the fight. We're constantly trying to kill the other team's AD carry but I'm starting to wonder if just controlling them while protecting our own might be a better plan? It depends on your champions, of course... Yorick isn't going to do a great job of protecting anyone but can do a reasonable job of forcing the other team's AD carry to run away.
So, what can I do better as AD carry? I still don't really know. I think traveling in the center of the group is often wrong. That lets the other team initiate onto me. On the flip side trailing behind can be wrong if they can swing around and gank me. I guess map control is probably really important for initial positioning? Having a way to disengage is strong which may be why my best carry is Tristana. If I'm always starting off in a bad spot then having a way out has to be good! Maybe try to convince people to protect me instead of charging in after other people? I don't even know if that's right for the team as a whole. It certainly seems ok for keeping the AD carry alive and shooting though!