As we are reaching the end of Season 19 of Mobile Legend: Bang Bang’s Ranked mode, this season has seen a dramatic shift in the meta. With a higher emphasis on fast-paced, objective-driven gameplay, teams are looking at ways to dominate the game early on, hoping to finish the match as soon as possible. This article will look at the best ways to win ranked matches without a Tank, and the best hero lineups to play in this way in Mobile Legends.
This kind of playstyle starts in the draft phase, where teams will look to pick 2 Mages/Supports in the mid lane as opposed to 1 Tank/Support and 1 Mage/Support. The key idea behind playing without a Tank is to have a good early and mid-game and to avoid prolonging the match too long until the late game. Mage and Support characters are also known to have a higher damage output right at the start of the game compared to Tanks. As such, 4-5 heroes on your team will need to have a good early game for this tactic to succeed, including the Jungler; Assassin Junglers hold precedent over Marksman Junglers in this meta due to the fact that they are better at farming and getting kills in the early game.
Essentially, you will want to pick 1 Mage with a high damage output potential in the early game, 1 Mage/Support with good Crowd Control (CC) skills to replace that from the Tank, an Assassin Jungler that can farm and look for kills early, and one or both offlaners that can easily clear minion waves and push turrets.
Mages that suit this playstyle
Much of this strategy depends on a high damage output from your Mage, so picking a hero with a good mix of continuous and burst damage is very important. Having some form of Crowd Control (CC) skill on the Mage is also good, as it helps replace some of the missing CC from the Tank.
Renowned for his everlasting fireballs and annoying stuns and slows, Valir is a menace starting from level 1. By taking his Skill 1 first, as long as he hits an enemy hero at the center with his skill, it will refresh and gain another stack, enabling him to play aggressively right from the start.
Valir is a good Mage to play in replacement of a Tank, so he can take the role of either the Mage or Support, as his Skill 2 can push enemies back, effectively keeping the Jungler and himself safe from surprise ambushes and enemy ganks.
The Little Wizard Lylia may look cute, but she actually packs a nasty punch early. One of the unique heroes that have both Skill 1 and Skill 2 right from the start, she can deal an insane amount of damage before the enemy can react with her combo of Skill 1 + Skill 2. However, Lylia does lack some CC other than her Slow Effect, so be sure to pair her with a Support with good CC capability.
The Yin-yang Geomancer known for her annoying stuns, Luo Yi is also a good option to play in this meta. Although she requires level 2 to be truly devastating, good Luo Yi players know how to proc Yin-Yang Reactions right from the start, so meeting one will make it infinitely harder for Tanks to cover their Junglers. Be sure to pair her with a Support that can provide some escape, as Luo Yi has no dash skills and is very prone to enemy ganks.
Supports that suit this playstyle
Arguably the player with the most responsibility here, the Support, in this case, will have to pay special attention to opening the map to prepare for possible ambushes, protecting the Jungler, and dealing poke damage to the enemy heroes. However, their main role will be to cover the Jungler at all times, which is crucial because there is no Tank that can take in a lot of damage.
This little bird Diggie can cause so much mayhem on the battlefield and is more effectively built like a Tank, rather than like a Support. His best asset to protect the Jungler is his Skill 2, which can pull back enemies to a spot they were before, similar to reversing time.
This interrupts the flow of the enemy ambush, giving your team enough time to launch a counterattack or to escape. Diggie also has an Ultimate that cancels all enemy CC skills for a few moments, which is perfect for initiating an escape.
The game’s newest hero is also capable of playing in this newer meta. Mathilda as a cover Support is very ideal, as she can use her Skill 2 to give her allies an extra dash towards her, pairing nicely with Mages who do not have dash skills such as Luo Yi, and can help them escape sticky situations. Her Skill 1 is also very useful for poking enemies in the early game, which can deal huge amounts of damage and force enemies to recall.
This beautiful medic hails as one of the game’s oldest supports and has finally become more relevant in the recent meta. Rafaela‘s abilities to slow and stun the enemy give her surprisingly useful utility in a team fight.
Similar to Mathilda, she can also help enemies escape by increasing their Movement Speed and healing them with her Skill 2 but needs to be in their vicinity to use it, which may instead end up endangering them both. While not the ideal support, she can be deadly in the right hands, speeding up allies and slowing enemies to her will.
Recommended Junglers and Offlaners
In most drafts, the best heroes are always selected first, either to be banned or picked at top slots. Since Junglers are not usually taken first (for fear of being counter-picked), Offlaners and Supports have priority picks. After discussing what Mages and Supports to pick above, Junglers and Offlaners should be next. For Junglers, Assassins are better to pick over Marksman, because of their higher damage output in the early game.
Assassins like Lancelot, Roger, and Yi Sun-Shin fill this spot immensely well. As for Offlaners, you may decide to pick one with a good early game, and another with a good pushing potential. This allows your team to have some flexibility; in the off-chance, your early-game-offlaner loses their lane, the other offlaner can split push to take some pressure off the other lanes.
The 2-support meta is not for everyone to play. While it may offer a much stronger early game, the trade-off of a weaker late game may not be worth it. In order to pull this playstyle off correctly, be sure that you are first playing in a full team of 5, which makes communication much easier.
Prioritize your hero picks in accordance with what you are comfortable and confident in playing, not what the meta tells you. Tier lists are helpful, but in the end, you are the one behind the wheel. Play with heroes that can be aggressive right from the start of the game, and keep pressuring the enemy in all 3 lanes. With a little luck and a lot of skill, you will be sure to win games in Mobile Legends even without fielding a proper Tank.
What are your thoughts on the strategies on how to win ranked matches in Mobile Legends without a tank? Did you ever try to win without a tank in Mobile Legends? Let us know in the comment section below!