Interview with Wingsofdeathx: "Top lane is no man's land and you need to be able to take care of yourself"
Tue 1st May 2012 - 7:01pm
Having managed to drag Daryl ‘Wingsofdeathx’ Hennegan away from the adulation of his adoring fans for a few moments, I took the opportunity to ask some questions from the man recently likened to a ‘top lane Scarra’.
Wings, as he is most commonly known is a League of Legends player from the US server. He recently came to prominence when he was recruited by Team Dignitas as a sub for their EPS campaign and then furthermore recruited by EG as their top laner. Here is what he has to say.
Hi, Wings. Firstly, thank you for agreeing to answer some question. So, lets get started. Can you tell me a little about yourself?
Wingsofdeath: My name is Daryl, I go to school in Irvine as a computer science major. I've been playing games since I was 5 starting with the original NES. I've been playing games my entire life and gaming is my passion and favorite hobby. Always was and always will be.
What roles do you most prefer in League of Legends?
Wingsofdeath: I prefer playing solos or ad carry. I've mostly been playing top lane recently. I generally like the characters that you place in these roles and I'm also a fan of laning. I don't really like jungling since you really don't do a whole lot mechanically. You beat on neutrals alot of the time. That isn't to say that jungling isn't difficult in its own right, but I play this game to PvP, and laning is closer to PvP than jungling.
How did you come to play LoL?
Wingsofdeath: I started playing League of legends as a distraction from WoW, my main game at the time. After HoN beta went retail and I didn't want to spend money to pay for an account, I started to look for another game I could play casually on the side when not raiding. I found out about League of Legends off of an ad banner from one of the forums i visited on a regular basis. From there, my love for the game grew and I ended up quitting WoW and playing league full time.
What encouraged you most to improve as a player?
Wingsofdeath: I am a competitive person by nature, so I usually strive to be the best at anything I play. Loving the game so much definitely keeps me motivated in that regard. I didn't just want to play league casually.
You've mentioned raiding in WoW, was it for a prominant guild?
Wingsofdeath: Yes, I used to raid and pvp at a high level during the Wrath of the Lich King expansion in WoW. I played on the server Kil'jaeden, raiding with a guild called IRON. I believe we were the top Horde guild at the time competing closely with another alliance guild for top guild on the server. Our guild was also home to several gladiators in the pvp scene.
Do you think EG will require some time to gel before they become a NA powerhouse?
Wingsofdeath: I think as will any new team, time is required to build the necessary foundation for teamwork and synergy. Players need to get a feel for each other's playstyles and capabilities.
What do you think are the most important qualities to be a good top laner?
Wingsofdeath: Being able to control the creep line and knowing a good variety of champions. Top lane is no man's land and you need to be able to take care of your self a lot of the time. You need to understand the matchups and understand how to play your champion against your opponents champion.
You need to be able to control the creep line to get it pushing towards you so you can farm safely near turret while forcing your opponent to overextend and be vulnerable to ganks. You also need to know when to push so that you can force objectives or roam and impact the game for your team instead of just farming all day.
Are there any items you would like to see buffed or have a further purchase of? (I.e. Maw of Malmortius)
Wingsofdeath: It would be cool to see an alternative upgrade to brutalizer and possibly executioners calling.
Have you only become interested in the competitive scene recently?
Wingsofdeath: I've always been interested in the competitive scene of any game I play. Being on a competitive team is just as much an opportunity as it is a goal. Working hard and practicing constantly is necessary, but you need a little luck too for the right opportunity to crop up. I was fortunate enough to be graced with the opportunity to play for EG, and I'm excited to see how things go from here.
What changes, if any, would you like to see made to top lane?
Wingsofdeath: As you may know, top lane is the longest lane in the game and coupled by the fact that there are no major objectives (in the laning phase) near top lane causes it to be a problem lane. This is because the likelihood of help coming is very small since there isn't much reason to be around top lane unless you either wanted to gank the top laner or contest red/blue buff depending on the team.
With dragon closer to bottom/mid lane, the jungler wants to control this area around early mid game. With the lane also being so long with distance to your own tower being greater than in other lanes, it means that this lane is easier to gank and also easier to hold back the creep line and zone your opponent off of exp/gold. I would like to see them address these issues in some way or another.
I've heard that they may give teams a higher incentive to control area around the top lane i.e. another objective, but that is just speculation atm.
And one last question, who is your favourite champion in the League?
Wingsofdeath: My favorite champion is probably lee sin, though I don't get to play him very much because hes always banned.
Thank you to Wings for taking the time to answer some questions, if you have any questions of your own then catch him at 'Wingsofdeathx' on IRC, he also streams here.