Red Bull Solo Q winners tell us which champions to pick in League 1v1

© Matthias Heschl/Red Bull Content Pool
Red Bull Solo Q world finalists give tips on which champions to play – and which to avoid – in one-vs-one League games.
Written by Pieter van HulstPublished on
In the first two parts of this League of Legends 1v1 guide, we went over items and strategy. Of course, none of these guides matter if you don’t have an effective champion to buy the items for or use the strategies on. That’s why in this guide we’ll go over the absolute best champions that you should pick in order to win 1v1 League games.
If you want a shot at getting to the Red Bull Solo Q finals in Germany later this year, then this guide is exactly what you need. Here, players who've already proven themselves in regionals and qualifiers will spill some of their secrets to give you a better chance of winning your qualifier. Don't forget to sign up now to compete.

Who not to pick

League of Legends is not primarily designed for one-vs-one games. Consequently, with more than 145 champions in the pool, there are a lot of picks that are simply not viable for a one-vs-one match. Saul ‘Sully’ Mendoza, winner of the Latin America qualifier last month tells us that scaling champions don’t work in Red Bull Solo Q. The second anyone hits a 100 creep score, the game's over. Some players can do this in 10 minutes. Champions like Ezreal, Azir and Kassadin are designed to be weak in the early stages of the game. Picking these champions will put you behind before the game has even started.
Michał 'Ravenno' Owczarski, winner of the Red Bull Solo Q Europe Nordic and East qualifier, agrees, saying that a large part of the current roster isn’t viable: “You can get easily countered by champions whose kit is 1v1 oriented. Not everyone is meant to rule the top lane.” So it’s a smart idea to keep your pocket Yuumi picks at home and focus on a champion who is played more in the solo lanes. Of course, there are some exceptions to that. There are some ADs that always do well in these events.
My heart and soul belongs to mid-lane mages
Michał 'Ravenno' Owczarski

Preparation is key

Before getting into a game, it’s important that you come up with a game plan. Are you going for the level three all-in with Talon? Or are you going to stick to farming until level six? Before you even get into champion select, it’s smart to take a look at what champions your opponents play. Sully tells us that it's very important to know what pool of champions your opponents are playing. “It'll help to give you an idea of what they'll feel comfortable with and with what you could respond more effectively. Regardless of that, it's almost always better to play a champion that you’re comfortable with.” Ravenno goes even further and says “If you figure your opponent plays only one or two champions, it’s an easy win.”

AD Carry or Mage?

Ravenno and Sully have different opinions on which class is stronger in 1v1 League. Sully thinks it’s ADCs. He says it’s easier to play safe, harass your opponent and manage your waves with the range that most ADs have in their kit. “A single Negatron Cloak completely denies the early game of a mage and they scale with completed items, which ADs don’t really do as much”.
Ravenno sees it more as a matter of preference. He thinks it’s not really about the champion class, but more about the skill level and skills of the champions. “My heart and soul belongs to mid-lane mages,” he jokes.

The queens of the top lane

Even with a large percentage of the League of Legends champion roster unviable, there are still a lot of champions to pick from. In the bot lane, Caitlyn has always been a nightmare to lane against. She has the longest base range in the game, an escape and a lot of damage combos that can scare away assassins in the early game. Ravenno says another great pick is Karma: “She has everything that's good for 1v1s – damage, survivability, disengage, CC, decent wave clear and does well against the vast majority of champions.”
Sully likes to play more aggressive champions with more all-in potential. His pick of choice is Irelia because “she doesn't have such direct counters. Since she's a champion who depends more on the outplay than anything, if you have confidence and know how to handle most match-ups you can probably be victorious in almost any situation.”
He also says that because of the absence of a jungler, Irelia can keep pushing and punishing her opponents in her strong early game. So keep your passive stacked and look for that all-in when your stun hits.
Still, if you think you channel the power of Faker and pull out your Nunu – go for it. There are always new tactics, champions and strategies to be discovered. The great thing about Red Bull Solo Q is that you can prove that Ezreal can work in a one-vs-one setting, simply by signing up and throwing down.
Red Bull Solo Q is far from over. Are you a Riven one-trick, ready to show your skills to the world? Do you have a sick pocket pick or a secret tactic? Sign up now to compete in Red Bull Solo Q.