League of Legends Role Guide: Attack Damage Carry (ADC)

by Phirex

If you’re looking for a role where you can fight out a 2v2 battle in-lane, play mechanically challenging champions and deal consistent damage throughout the course of the game whilst being protected by your team-mates – then the ADC (Attack, Damage, Carry) role should be right up your street.

What is the Attack Damage Carry? 

The ADC is the member of the bot lane who takes the majority of the CS and deals consistent, high damage with their auto-attacks and abilities throughout the game. As the name suggests, the ADC tends to buy attack damaged items to maximise their damage output. 

The ADC tends to be squishy in nature – that is, easier to kill as they have less health points than other champions. However, this is offset by their high damage.

Being squishy means the ADC has to be careful with positioning and mechanically, as they can be killed fairly easily if either of these are amiss. 

The ADC is helped out by the Support position, in the lane and throughout the game. Some supports are tanky, enabling the ADC to be protected by an extra body in front of them or engaging to set up the ADC.

Whilst other Supports will be more passively focussed on keeping the ADC alive by providing shields, heals and crowd control. 

If you have a friend who also plays League, it’s great to get them along as your bot lane partner, as you can grow your game knowledge and lane understanding together, leading to more seamless communication and cooperation. 

How to Start Out as an ADC

When starting out as an ADC, you’ll be with your Support in lane for the early game. The main things to focus on in lane are trading and CSing; the ADC needs to be especially vigilant as there are two possible sources of damage due to their two opponents. 

Trading

Trading in lane is the process of exchanging damage with your lane opponent in the hope of coming out of top; in the bottom lane, try to be selective with engaging (starting fights) and aware of the enemy Support’s movements.

It’s usually the Support that will engage whilst the ADC provides damage from further behind. Make sure you stay alert and follow up engagements started by your Support if you can. 

The ADC’s ranged auto attacks are also important for small trades in lane. Try and punish the enemy ADC or Support for coming too close by giving them an auto-attack to let them know you’re there. 

CSing

Whilst trading is important, it’s also imperative to ensure you accrue gold and XP by killing minions (CSing). Your Support can assist you with this, but maybe have a practice in Practice Mode. 

What are the ADC’s Main Responsibilities?

Pro players' on the LoL S10 Preseason map changes
Credit: Riot Games

Damage

The ADC is responsible for a large chunk of the team’s damage. Due to the non-costly and consistent nature of auto attacks, the ADC can provide damage in team-fights that extend over longer periods, whereas ability-reliant champions will have to manage their ability cooldowns more closely. 

Whilst you won’t do as much damage as other lanes at the beginning of the game, by the time you have 6 items you and the Mid laner should be the primary carries for your team. Your auto-attacks also make you proficient at taking Baron or Dragon.

In order to provide damage consistently, the ADC needs to be alive in team-fights. Positioning behind your tanks and close to your Support will help you pump out those auto-attacks for longer periods of time without getting killed. 

What Champion Should I Start With?

Tristana, the Yordle Gunner - League of Legends
League champion Tristana – Credit: Riot Games

When starting out, it’s best to pick a champion that is easy to use and has an escape mechanism. Tristana is a great choice; she’s easy to understand, her W ability is an escape, and she does a lot of damage.

Best of luck – enjoy yourself!

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