Level at the beginning of day 30: 24
As usual, I started with the free champions of the week, which included Galio. People in the comments were saying that this is the last chance to play Galio before he gets “replaced” by a new champion – I know he’s getting reworked, but I didn’t think it was that big of a deal? They reworked Warwick and I didn’t notice a difference. (Then again, I hadn’t actually played Warwick yet, just encountered him in games.) Since the rework is happening I figure I may as well wait until that comes out and not bother getting to know a version that soon won’t exist. You can’t miss what you never had.
Kha’Zix and Rengar are both clearly meant to be junglers, but I had fun playing them both in lanes anyway. I like that Kha’Zix’s abilities evolve with his ultimate – makes him more fun. This reminds me a lot of Rek’Sai, whose abilities do different things depending on whether or not she is burrowed.
I liked Rengar as well because I felt like he has a good mix of close and long range abilities, which I feel is ideal for me (well, it’s probably ideal for everyone). This made me happy because my boyfriend likes Rengar – finally, we agree on something!
Based on their backstories, it basically sounds like Kha’Zix and Rengar are in love with
each other…they’ve got that whole “love/hate” dynamic going on. I wonder if they came out at about the same time. (I know I could look this up, but that sounds too much like effort.) I am all for this alien-lion romance.
Vel’Koz was also fun although I had a hard time aiming her ultimate properly. I don’t know why I seem to love these void creatures so much…they just happen to have some of the most unique abilities in the game. I don’t want to love them, but I do.
I was dismayed at Syndra’s scary-ass voice, but she was really fun to play. Also real purdy.
The last free champion I tried was Poppy, who I don’t like at all. I probably didn’t put enough effort into her but she just felt so useless and weak.
Now, the real story of this post. I will preface this by saying that I don’t remember exactly what happened. So this is just what I do remember, and it will probably come out as a big rambly mess because I was so emotional at the time and kind of still am.
I mentioned in a previous post that I purchased Tristana because I wanted a stronger ADC. I tried her out on day 30 in an intermediate bot game, which is what I usually do for new champions. It’s what I had been doing all day with no problems.
I thought I was doing just fine around level 2 or 3 – I hadn’t gotten any kills yet, but I also hadn’t been killed or allowed the enemy to push the lane further than I wanted them to. But my support, Thresh, clearly felt otherwise.
Something must have prompted them to say this (maybe they died, or I did), but they said that I had used no mana.
I said that it was because my Q ability had no mana cost, and that was the end of that. I had just gotten my W and E abilities, and I didn’t want to use my W because it would place me at close-range, and I didn’t think I was strong enough to be able to handle that.
I tried to use my abilities more after that, though, which meant I was using my W. The game continued, one or both of us died probably, and they yelled at me for not doing enough damage and just kept saying things like “COME ON” and “WHY” and such. (By the way, when I say yelled in this case, I mean it because most of this was in all caps.)
I got upset and said that I was trying my best and that next time I would try out new champions in PvP instead (sarcasm, obviously). And they said that I should do beginner bot games, which I’m certainly not opposed to if I felt like I really needed it, but I’d been doing fine in intermediate for a long time now, and I said as much. I said that people were usually a bit more understanding in bot games, and I asked if they had any actual tips for me.
They said “you have abilities, use them” and not to go all in – which I already knew, and had only started doing because they wanted me to use my abilities. So then I tried playing a bit more conservatively. And then Thresh died, and yelled at me again for not doing enough damage, saying “why is the support player doing more damage than the ADC”.
So I was like oh my god fuck this so the next time we had the opportunity I literally just used all of my abilities in one burst, which did in fact ALMOST kill the bot, but I still died right before I could.
The other thing that was happening throughout this was that Thresh was using his lantern ability and kept getting mad at me for not using it. Initially it was because I didn’t know
how, and they taught me, which was good. That’s what I want – I think it’s okay to want your fellow players to improve, I just think you should be nice about it and try to actually teach them new things.
But after that I still got yelled at for not going to it – I thought that it was optional, just there if I felt I needed it sort of thing, and I didn’t. I thought I was doing fine.
For example, one time I was killing minions in lane, not in any danger at all, and the lantern appeared in the river in the jungle. I thought that Thresh only cast it for a benefit for himself, or something (to be honest I forget what that ability actually does), because why would I need to leave my position right now? But I guess he was trying to set us up for a specific strategic play or something, and I didn’t get that.
I felt like if they wanted to do something specific like that, they should have communicated that in chat, for example, “Tris come here so we can kill _” or something. Sometimes there is no time for that, but this was clearly not one of those times. I’m also not the type to just follow other players around blindly, unless I am the support player, and even then I’m learning more and more not to do that (ex. the level 5 dragon fiasco from a couple weeks ago).
Anyway, those are the only specific examples I remember, but the entire game was comprised of things like that. Something I was doing was always wrong and “COME ON” and “WTF”-worthy.
When the game ended, a pop up appeared saying, “Congratulations! You’ve reached level 25!” and I burst into tears because there was nothing that merited congratulations in that game, not at all. Somehow I’ve managed to level up all the way to 25 without actually becoming as skilled as other level 25 players. I just play and play and gain XP but all that playing isn’t helping me to improve. I thought it was, but obviously I was wrong.
I know how stupid and small it sounds written down. In the grand scheme of life, it is stupid and small. But at the time, it felt like someone was just constantly telling me I was stupid and not good enough for 20 minutes straight, and I was upset. I’ve worked really hard at this. I do not have a natural inclination for this kind of thing; I’ve been aware of that from the start. But I thought I had progressed far enough that I could do an intermediate bot game without incident.
And I know that they are wrong about needing to go back down to beginner. It was just a bad combination of me legitimately having an off day/playing a new champion and this player having a very specific idea of how the game “should” be played and getting angry when I didn’t follow their lead. If I had just played normally, we probably would still have done fine. Maybe not amazing, but fine.
But nevertheless, it made me cry. A lot. I cried for like a solid 30 minutes and I gave up. I was emotionally exhausted and this wasn’t fun anymore. But I reminded myself that this wasn’t supposed to be fun. The fact that I ended up liking the game was just a bonus. I’m doing this for someone else. And if moments like this are any indication, I will never be good enough to really impress my boyfriend and be useful in a game. But I owe it to him to give it my best shot, even if I hate every second of it from here on out.
So I didn’t give up for good, just for the rest of the weekend. I could have played more later that day and the next, but I decided to take a time out. In the end, I didn’t even report the player, because even though they were mean, they weren’t entirely wrong in their comments, and they did actually teach me something, albeit in a very gruff manner.
I’m still sad about it. I found something new that I like, something I never thought I could ever like, and I feel like it’s being taken away from me because I’m not good enough to participate. This is exactly why I never liked video games in the first place (in addition to being anxious and scared), because I feel like the gaming community prizes skill above all else. This is why I wasn’t allowed to play video games with my friends as a teenager.
And I’ve said so many times how much I would like to change this, how much I would like to be a voice for players like me, especially females, but it’s clear to me now that there is nothing I can do. Not without actually improving.
The funny thing is that I’ve been playing Gamecube games with my boyfriend for the past month or so and have encountered these same issues. He makes fun of me and gets annoyed when I screw up, but I just laugh because I find myself amusing and I know he loves me. He’s allowed to do those things (to a point), because he’s my best friend and we love each other. We have a close relationship. Strangers on the internet are not allowed to do those things.
Even with him, though, it still does hurt a bit. Why is our first response always to mock rather than help? I’m guilty of this too sometimes.
When he does teach me it feels so much better – for example, I was having difficulty reading the world map in Tales of Symphonia because I thought that the arrow pointed in the direction we were going, but my boyfriend taught me that it actually represents your field of vision, meaning the widest part of the arrow is the direction you’re going. That is something that would never have occurred to me. Like, that’s now how arrows normally work. Once he taught me that, I was able to move around the map much easier.
So, TL;DR: I got verbally beaten up for an entire game, people are mean, I suck, and now LOL isn’t fun anymore. However I will keep going because I still want to do something nice for my boyfriend, even if it will probably just be a gesture in the end.
Level at the end of day 30: 25
Games played: 8
Champions played: Soraka, Kayle, Kha’Zix, Vel’Koz, Syndra, Poppy, Rengar, Tristana
Death snack of the day: Swedish berries