League of Legends: How to Know When You Are Tilted and How to Untilt

League of Legends/Riot Games
League of Legends/Riot Games /
League of Legends/Riot Games
League of Legends/Riot Games /

League of Legends is a game that can cause players to get very emotional, but sometimes you hit the point of tilt. Here is what that is and how to recover from it.

A given game of League of Legends can elicit a lot of different emotions. From the ecstasy of a win to the adrenaline rush of a Baron steal or base race to the despair of watching a fed Yasuo run your team over, players will often let those emotions cause them to tilt.

“Tilt” is originally a term from poker, defined as “a state of mental or emotional confusion or frustration in which a player adopts a less than optimal strategy, usually resulting in the player becoming over-aggressive.” In League of Legends, that definition is word-for-word accurate for every player that queues up for game after game and racking up losses.

It’s easy to be tilted and not recognize it, but it’s far harder to find a way to de-tilt. Here’s what tilt looks like for League of Legends players and what you can do to get out of tilt.

What Are the Signs You Are Tilted?

1. You’re still thinking about the last game.

Once a game of League of Legends ends, there’s really no benefit to dwelling on it. By the time you have queued up for your next game, you should have put that last game out of your mind.

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Yes, there are always things that you can learn from a given game and you should definitely try to pick out aspects to improve on from previous games. However, there is a key difference between thinking about the last and the lesson from the last game. Basically, if you’re thinking about what went wrong (“I CSed poorly in lane”) versus what the lesson is to use in your next game (“I need to make sure I’m prioritizing last-hitting in lane”) that is a clear sign of tilt.

2. You’re focused on your LP.

Any time you start counting your LP, you’ve already lost before the loading screen finishes. You should always focus more on how you played than the result and you should definitely care more about whether you’re improving than whether you’re gaining LP.

When you get to the point that you’re focused on how much LP you’ve gained, lost, or need to get to your next promos, you’ve completely forgotten about the process and are focused entirely on the result. This not only leads to tilt, since you’re putting more pressure on yourself and the outcome of the game, it exacerbates tilt by making you play more aggressively and decreases your chance of winning.

3. You’re blaming your teammates and/or luck.

“I never get good teammates. Every time I get an AFK on my team or have to face a smurf on the enemy team.” If you’re thinking these kinds of thoughts, you are definitely on tilt.

Hard truth time: whether you win or lose a given game or set of games is most definitely impacted by both luck and whether you get good teammates/opponents. However, whether you play well in those games and whether you will improve and climb in the long run is not.

Good players understand that with enough time and games their skill will improve and their rank will improve with it. They’ll acknowledge unlucky games or gaming sessions, but they acknowledge that these are the exception.

Similarly, it’s fine to acknowledge when you get a game that is unwinnable because of circumstances outside of your control. However, there’s no system out to stop you from winning your promos or getting to the next division. If you believe that you won’t get good teammates, then you never will.

4. You’re typing a lot.

I am a big proponent of the /mute all train. I don’t think that there are very many instances where teammates in League of Legends are going to give you useful information.

In the same vein, I don’t think it’s ever worth it to type to your teammates or the enemy in your games. It’s unlikely that your teammates will listen to you and there’s no reason to give your opponents an advantage by letting them know what’s going on with your team.

There’s nothing wrong with typing sparingly, directing your team to do an objective while you split or something. However, if you’re typing more than two or three messages in a game, it’s probably not stuff that is purely game-focused.

5. You’re doubting your own ability.

Another type of tilt that most players don’t acknowledge or recognize is internal tilt. That’s when your anger isn’t directed outward at things like teammates or luck, but inwards at yourself.

If you’re the kind of person who gets down on themselves or dwells on their mistakes, it’s important to recognize that’s a kind of tilt too. Just because you’re not lashing out at teammates, that doesn’t mean you’re not tilted.

Whenever you go into a game, you should feel confident and optimistic about your chances. Do not queue up if you don’t have a plan, if you feel bored or frustrated at how badly you’ve been playing, or are resolving to just playing passive. Play to win, don’t play to not lose.

6. You’re getting cocky.

Believe it or not, there’s actually a phenomenon in poker called “winner’s tilt.” This is when a player has been doing so well in a session, winning so much money, that they feel invincible and begin to take bigger and bigger risks. It’s basically a feeling that you can do no wrong.

The problem is that this feeling can bite you in the butt by leading to a bad beat. It can also mask the fact that you might not be playing well and are getting away with bad habits that you shouldn’t.

That’s why it’s so important to constantly judge whether you are playing well in your games (regardless of outcome). If you’re playing well, that’s great, and you should continue to ride that wave. But you should also try to keep yourself from getting too confident because you don’t want to start deviating from the kind of play that’s been succeeding all day.

On the other hand, if you’re winning despite playing well it might be a good opportunity to cash in and walk out. Sometimes, it’s better to just take the free LP the gods have given you rather than push your luck and have a truly horrible game that will affect your play in the future.

Next. 50 tips to climb ranked in Season 10. dark

How Do You Untilt?

There are a lot of good articles out there about how to prevent yourself from becoming tilted, but not a lot stop tilt once it’s started. Here are a few ways to manage tilt while you’re in a game or session (some might overlap with advice from other articles).

  • Take a break from ranked or League of Legends all together.
  • Focus on small wins in your game like taking your tower, getting the next dragon, or getting a pick on that fed, cocky Yasuo.
  • While you’re in the death timer, close your eyes, concentrate only on your breathing.
  • Type some funny/positive comments in your team’s chat (you can literally just make a list of silly things to say and copy/paste them in every game).
  • Put on a funny video or song on your second monitor if you have one.
  • Focus on the good things that you did in this game. Leave the negatives and things to improve on for when the game ends.
  • Recognize and acknowledge when your teammates do something good, even if it’s as small as staying positive in chat during a game where you’re getting stomped.
  • Remind yourself that one loss isn’t going to keep you from your ranked goal or from improving and that there’s plenty of time left in the season.