This is an original post by P1ggyBomb3r on Reddit, this was posted with his permission with more coming in the future.
Hey, this is P1ggyB0mb3r, I’m Team Smurf’s Community Coach and Competitive Advisor. In this article I will be talking about the importance of shopping, how to assist your teammates to shop frequently and the downfalls of not shopping frequently.
I will use the match between Team Secret vs. G2.Esports during the split 2 of the Evil 8 as the source material for discussion. Click here for the Vibby highlight reel. The full match can be watched below:
When to shop?
Typically the jungler will shop after completing their jungle rotation and the laner will shop when they are sitting on just above 1000 gold. The roamer will follow the shopping pattern of whoever they are supporting most of the time. Nonetheless, the golden rule for shopping in high tiers is to not sit on more than 1000-1400 gold.
Items make the world go around NOT gold in your pocket:
Of course you want a gold advantage or at least want to be equal with your enemy. However, this gold should transfer into items as frequently as possible, which should in-turn transfer into pressure in the lane or the jungle.
How to do you help your laner shop?
Creating opportunities to shop applies mostly to your laner as your jungler would most likely shop after their rotation, but it can also apply to your roamer who may be pressuring the lane with your laner. Look at the source video and see how either (1) KValafar pushes the lane and then ports home, (2) Team Secret(TS) secure a kill in lane and help KValafar rotate down to the jungle shop, or (3) Mowglie sits in the mustache bush while KValafar pushes lane and they both rotate to the jungle shop.
The downfalls of not shopping frequently:
As you can see in the source video G2 does not setup frequent opportunities for REDemption to shop, at one point he was sitting on 2700+ gold. Similarly, D1ngo and DarkPotato sat on 1500+ gold during different points in the match. This allowed TS to apply excessive amounts of pressure in lane and near G2’s middle heal. To the extent that even a great Forced Accord and Afterburn from G2 couldn’t secure the kills onto TS. The slow build up of items allowed TS to slowly chip at G2’s tier 1 turret and then brute force the kill onto their tier 2 turret. This prevented REDemption from doing what SAW does best – push lane. Forcing G2 to overextend and eventually losing the match.
Although G2’s itemisation may be questioned, TS still effectively shopped frequenlty, which they transfered into pressure in lane preventing 1/3 of G2 from performing their role (SAW) and eventually resulted in the win.
If you’re a challenger team looking to push further into the challenger series or make it into the Evil 8, you must create opportunities for your team to frequently shop. Additionally, when you buy your items don’t just continue to farm, transfer items into pressure onto your enemy.