League of Legends ADC Guide – AD Carry’s Handbook

The AD Carry is the most impactful member of any League of Legends team. As an individual that the allied team revolves around and the enemy team primarily tries to eliminate, this role is one of the most challenging lanes to play in League of Legends. This ADC Guide will aim to introduce what it’s like to play AD Carries and how the player can get into this position starting from scratch by learning the duties, responsibilities, and overview of playing these champions.

Ashe as a woodsman hunting for her prey
Get ready for our ADC Guide!

About The AD Carry

The AD Carry is the role that the entire team tries to groom and take care of during the entirety of the match. This is because ADCs are able to grow into monsters of demolition and death when they get a lead or at least get into the later stages of the game. Once the AD Carry stacks up enough Attack Speed, Crit Modifiers, and Attack Damage, they will be able to deal massive amounts of consistent damage towards enemy units, structures, and neutral objectives necessary to win the game. Become a Legendary ADC player like Doublelift, Uzi, and Rekkles!

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Learn how to play ADC from the best players in the world!

ADCs are extremely important to get ahead but that doesn’t mean they’re automatically the best role to main for all types of players. Since they are extremely important, they face a number of challenges like constantly being ganked by the Mid Lane & Jungle to prevent them from getting ahead in the game. ADCs are also the primary target in teamfights meaning the enemy will always try to kill them instantly. This ADC guide will teach you the best ways to play around such threats.

History of AD Carries

The ADC role is very controversial because of its volatility as a role in League of Legends. As mentioned, this position can be very strong but that only means that even the slightest change can destroy its standing in the meta completely. During a good part of 2018, the ADC role got wiped out because of the Marksman Patch 8.11 which aimed to change the way that Marksmen are played. Instead of tuning the champion role, it ended up destroying its dynamic completely.

Throughout 2018, every type of champion other than Marksmen were being played in the bottom lane. This caused a lot of dissatisfaction in the professional and casual scene of League of Legends. There were a handful of professional players that were forced to get sidelined from the scene temporarily because of the sudden shift in playstyle. It took 1 and a half years before the League of Legends scene finally accepted Marksmen back into the bottom lane.

Types of AD Carry Champions

There is only one type of champion that you can use as the standard bot lane AD Carry – The Marksman. Marksmen are champions that mainly utilize their ranged attacks to deal damage. Despite having only one viable champion class in the lane, there are different types of marksmen that each serve different purposes for the team. Knowing the difference between Marksman champions is a necessary bit of information in this ADC guide to help you get started.

1. Standard Crit-Based Auto-attackers

Crit-based Marskmen rely mostly on attack speed and crit modifiers to deal damage. Crit Damage is the highest source of damage in the game that is able to stack up to a point where the champion can consistently deal double or more damage on every hit. These champions do not rely too much on abilities and are happy just to be able to Free Hit champions from a safe position to melt down even the tankiest of opponents.

Caitlyn wearing a guerilla uniform and firing away
Hitting them where it hurts!

Examples: Aphelios, Caitlyn, Draven, Jhin, Jinx, Sivir, Tristana, Twitch, Xayah

Crit-based AD Carries don’t have a lot of damage dealing abilities and most have utility-based actions instead. The biggest weakness of these champions is their limited mobility. As such, they are compensated with some disengage options to help them secure some space to prevent them from being easily jumped upon by incoming threats. These champions provide the most amount of raw damage among any other types and are often chosen when the team is built around ensuring the ADC will be successful in lane.

2. On-hit Based Auto-Attackers

On-hit Based Marksmen also rely on dealing the highest amount of damage by using auto-attacks. The main difference is that they do not need crit modifiers but instead use champion passives or items to help them increase their damage output. They incorporate other stats in their kit such as Ability Power to do this. These champions are great against enemies who would stack defensive stats such as armor to ensure that the DPS will not fall off regardless of the matchup.

Kog'maw as a small fantasy dragon
Putting a little something in the shots

Examples: Ashe, Kai’sa, Kog’maw, Varus, Vayne

Since on-hit based marksmen incorporate other stats like AP, they also have some useful abilities in their kit that deal damage. However, their abilities are not the only source of damage, unlike Ability User Champions that mainly use skills. They are a good mix between the other two types of champions on this list. These champions are great but rely heavily on itemizing quickly to maximize the damage output. They have very late powerspikes and require more setup.

3. Ability Users

Ability Users do not deal damage mainly via their attacks but instead by using activated skills and abilities. While these champions can still deal damage via auto-attacks, the vast majority of their damage will need them pressing a button on the keyboard. Players who aren’t into patiently right-clicking on the opponents instead of pressing skills and abilities will most likely want to play these champions since they like to rely on combos and skill timings.

a fantasy world with Ezreal as an archer | ADC Guide
Magic missiles over bullets every day!

Examples: Ezreal, Kalista, Lucian, Miss Fortune, Samira, Senna

The item build on these champions depend on what their abilities need to stack. Ability Users have very impactful Ultimate Abilities that deal a crap ton of damage which highlights the entire existence of themselves as ADCs. Unlike most of the other marksmen on this list, these champions rely on heavy burst instead of consistent damage. This is most effective in getting rid of high-priority targets. These champions will want other champions that provide consistent damage so that there’s no backtime in dealing damage.

ADC Guide: Duties & Responsibilities

In this ADC guide, we’ve seen all the things that Marksmen are capable of but the champion itself doesn’t make the game. As an ADC player, you have some of the most important duties and responsibilities. Some of these might seem obvious but there are proper ways to execute your duty as an ADC player. Even the most experienced ADC players adhere to these list of duties and responsibilities in order to help their team achieve victory on Summoner’s Rift.

1. Scaling

Scaling means to play in a way that secures you in the late game. This involves earning as much gold as possible to buy items by farming, kill participation, and clearing wards. As the ADC, you are entitled to take everything you can. The team should prioritize giving you as much of an advantage as possible by giving away minion waves, Turrets and Plates, kills, and even some jungle camps so that you build a gold lead.

As an ADC player, you must enforce your need to become fed so you mustn’t be shy to take things even if you don’t ask for it. Sure, some people won’t appreciate it but you know what’s better for your team even if they don’t. If you want to be useful for your team, take everything that they are working hard for while trying to develop an advantage in your lane such as trying to secure as much CS as possible and trying to push the enemy into the turret so that you can get plates.

2. Positioning

In a fight, positioning is the only thing stopping the enemy from killing you on the spot. ADCs don’t have as much survivability as other champions. The moment an enemy manages to get on top of you, you’re practically dead already. To make sure that you don’t get killed this way, you need to position yourself in a way that keeps you safe while being able to freely auto-attack high-priority to ensure that you’re dealing as much damage to the enemy team as possible.

Positioning doesn’t necessarily mean playing safe. ADC players can position themselves aggressively provided that either you are confident that you won’t get insta-killed or you have the disengage tools to help you when the going gets tough. A general rule when positioning for a kill is to try to hug a wall that you can Flash over. Standing in the middle of an open area leaves you open to the enemy. You should also try to be aware of your teammates’ positions so that you know if you have a good escape route.

3. Primary Damage Source

In this ADC guide, we kept emphasizing how important this role is in terms of helping the team deal damage. Unlike Mid Laners, Junglers, and even Top Laners, the ADC can take down even the tankiest members. This is because the other damage sources in the game are mostly burst-type damage which are in-charge of getting rid of enemy carries. Carries in a team are usually inaccessible because they’re protected by frontline tanks and supports which are very hard to kill.

Once the ADC has gotten rid of frontline tanks and supports, the entire enemy team becomes vulnerable. ADC champs will instantly take down any champion that hasn’t built tank items withing 5-10 auto-attacks. The ADC is also very good at taking down objectives such as neutral monsters and turrets. If the ADC isn’t dealing the most damage in a fight, there is something going on in the teamfighting that’s making the game difficult for your team.

ADC Guide: Tips & Tricks

The AD Carry is a role that tries to play safe in order to play aggressive. The secret to becoming a successful AD Carry is to put your own well-being way on top of the other members of your team. You should make sure that you’re always working towards creating a lead for yourself at all times so work on your CSing and other advanced micro skills. Never try to play a hero by going alone and always wait for support when you want to engage in a fight. Remember that the ADC is dependent on its teammates.

Tristana with her cannon as a small dragon
Hope you learned a lot in our ADC Guide!

Additional ADC Tips:

  • Never stop trying to farm CS
  • Never be the first one to engage
  • Don’t be ashamed to ask for help
  • Have your Jungler & Mid Laner focus their attention on your lane
  • If you have the chance to steal a kill, take it.
  • Practice using [A + Left Click] to auto-attack

ADC General Overview

The AD Carry isn’t one of the Easiest Roles For Beginners to take up early in the game. However, developing your mastery over this role early on in their careers can be very beneficial. It can get really frustrating to play as an ADC especially if the enemy team has a bunch of assassins that can dive into your backline easily. If you’re planning to play this lane, perhaps it’s a good idea to develop your patience alongside your skills in League of Legends. This ADC guide should prepare you for the worst to come.

Is ADC easy to learn?

Playing as an ADC doesn’t require you to learn a lot of Macro Skills. However, micro skills such as CSing and Positioning are important towards becoming successful in playing this role. If you’re a beginner, perhaps it’s a good idea to take a look at our ADC guide before you dive into the bottom lane to take a shot at playing this role.

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