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Vladimir is known to get very strong at lv9 due to his ability to have Transfusion (Q) maxed. Other than staying in lane and not losing out on experience that way, what is a good way to gain a level advantage on your opponent assuming you both never leave lane or die (i.e. evenly matched)?

Would XP-Quints work moderately? I've read around and seen that at most it'd get you a minion or two ahead, is this accurate?

My thoughts that could be elaborated on:

  • Jungler ganks: Not very reliable. I am looking for something I can consistently do to achieve a level-advantage.
  • Steal Exp from Jungle Leash: Kind of a jerk move considering most junglers don't appreciate it, additionally you might miss out on CS before you get to lane.
  • Get a kill: What about the times this isn't possible? i.e. Evenly matched skill and sustain.

Question: What are some ways to gain a level-advantage on an opponent other than the above?

  • In general, other quints are a lot more useful in game. However, I can say that getting an early level 2 on wukong, xin or leona can wreck lane opponents – Ben Craig Aug 11 '14 at 16:57
  • Alistar if super early level advantage (WQ combo can kill most of the times) but Syndra in the longer level advantage (since maxing out her abilities is a must) – Randomizer Aug 11 '14 at 19:10
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    -1 Asking 'lists' is a not good question because it may change with patch and new itens/monsters/champions/(you-name-it).... A good question is asking about a specific strategy, showing examples of what you are doing with what you are going etc. – Michel Aug 11 '14 at 19:39
  • Good point, I forgot about that. I'll adjust the question to reflect. – Shelby115 Aug 11 '14 at 19:44
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The thing is that League of Legends was designed so that even matches do not gain or lose XP advantage if they don't recall or stay alive, and you described a situation in which it shouldn't happen.

The only remaining option without running to jungle camps (Which is doable as midlane Vlad, but not viable as toplane Vlad) is zoning, but it will be hard to remain healthier than your opponent if you decide to go for it. Let's consider a simple 1v1 pre6 scenario where your opponent is melee and afraid of you. by standing behind your minions and getting last hits and hitting him if he tries to get CS, you are denying him gold but not XP. Now a new scenario, both waves just arrived and are fighting in the middle of the lane. You force your opponent to retreat a bit by advancing behind his caster minions (You didn't hit him, he's out of range). Now you can get XP and gold, when if you zone him far enough, he gets nothing but passive gold. If he approches you, you can decide to hit him or not. If you do, his minions will aggro you and you'll need to use the brush or go back behind your creeps for a second. If you opponent is scared enough and doesn't know that his minions will help him, you'll deny him lots of gold. This is why it won't work at an average level, anyone that has played a decent number of games knows how to react to that. You can miss CS, but you should not miss XP.

Another answer would be to try only denying him gold, and he can either lose gold and stay healthy or get the gold but take the harass. But without good sustain he'll eventually have to go back and lose XP, then push the wave to the turret and back quickly, you'll have more XP afterwards. But you described a rare situation in which you can't get advantage.

Other solutions : Zilean in your team (8% xp is nice if you're looking for just getting the lvl 9 first for instance), XP Quints, stealing the enemy's first buff with luck (Got the enemy blue buff by making a jungler panic-smite with a Gragas timed barrel roll), going to another lane and quickly taking 2 waves if your ally just died then coming back with TP, zoning your enemy into having to take the other way around the map if he just warded and has to come back to lane, preventing him to ward so that he is so afraid of your jungler that he stays at times really far from the wave, etc. But these are just small things, not like when you have 2 levels advantage because you manage to repeatedly kill your opponent and clear the wave.

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  • In regards to your comment about zoning, even with him standing that far away I believe he may still gain exp (depending) as a recent patch has increased the exp range a noticeable amount. Its looking like it comes down to either me having to be better than them or waiting for a gank if I'm top-lane. I don't typically have an issue with being evenly matched as Vlad, but I fear the day it happens because I play so aggressively with him haha. – Shelby115 Aug 12 '14 at 14:30
  • Yep, they made zoning way harder, that's why you can only do it against unexperienced opponents. I do not believe the patch is that recent, unless we aren't talking about the same one. Good Vlad players are aggressive of course, I used to main him when I was playing on NA, then he got an insanely hard nerf on his Q and I got sad because he was my first 6300 IP champion ;-) – PhilDenfer Aug 12 '14 at 14:43
  • Don't get me started haha, Back in Seasons 1 & 2 a champion got nerfed not even two weeks after I bought them. It made me so sad. Anyways, Vlad hasn't received any direct buffs lately, but I feel he's getting stronger through items though. If played right he's a god. I was messing up a ton yesterday and I still carried my team, given this was silver-elo but still. – Shelby115 Aug 12 '14 at 15:42
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Honestly, the best way to get a level advantage is to bully the enemy out of lane forcing them back and then sustaining yourself in lane as long as possible.

With Vladimir this is/isn't hard at the same time. Vladimir is one of the best sustain champions but he needs a few levels in order to be a sustaining bully. The first few levels most champions can actually bully a Vladimir out of lane simply because he has no damage to trade with and his sustain doesn't do much yet.

I suggest early levels trying to let the wave push towards your turret. This let's you play the safest so that the enemy has less room to try to force fights upon you. Once you get level 5 or so you can finally begin trading a little bit because your CD from Q has gone down. By level 7 you should be great at it. At these times you need to try auto + Q harassing as much as possible. By this harass you can force them to go back and then shove the wave as quickly as possible into their turret making several minion waves die to it. Don't forget to go back yourself though because you don't want them to come back with big items, force you out of lane, and then do the exact same thing.

Also, if you manage to shove your lane fast enough you can potentially run to nearby jungle camps and take them for extra exp/gold.

EDIT:

This is really the only reliable way to ensure you are ahead in levels. You can never expect kills or jungle ganks to get ahead. It's a really dick move to steal exp from your jungler at their buff because it delays their level 2 which hurts them really badly. Hurting your jungler that much gives you a slight boost to level 2 in your lane but literally puts your entire team behind because your jungler won't be able to gank which will likely lead to a rage fest between you, your team, and your jungler.

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