As the title says, I wanted to share what I've learned from playing with many different players from bronze, to challenger.
Apart from the obvious things that set them apart, there is also a hidden, but key difference that sets these players apart, and determines who goes to high elo, and who stays in 'elo hell'.
I will give my opinions of divisions I've been in, while paying some attention to general attitude towards games and their respective mindsets. _(these are just my impressions, and opinions, about players who have 100 or more games in these divisions)_
Bronze - players who have difficulties, or care very little: Players who because of some reason can't play the game properly. Most of the time it's internet connection, low-end pc's or other technical problems. Players that play in bronze without these issues are mostly not interested in winning, but rather on enjoying the game, and doing what they consider to be fun. No further input from me because it's been a long time since I've played in bronze.
Silver - the biggest division by sheer numbers, players here have low skill levels on their respective champions, huge champion pools, and general lack of game knowledge. They have difficulty snowballing, roaming, rotating, defending, and especially finishing games. Priorities differ, and there is not general rule here. Team coordination is very low, wards are rarely seen, and even when they are, they are ignored. Object permanence does not exist here as well. Players are prone to tilting and often come into games tilted. At this point, the game becomes more of a chore to them, than actual fun, and it shows. When winning, they are euphoric, and when losing they might try harder but can also give up completely. Sometimes even when losing they feel like they are ahead and make daring plays that sometimes turn the game around.
Gold - the place where skill dies. Getting to gold is not hard for an average player after spending some time improving. But for most who do that, they just end up in gold and then stop, thinking they are already improved enough. Here there are a few OTPs, but similar to silver, players generally know very little about the game, but players around mid and high gold are impressionable and can be directed into playing better, following your lead, and listening to your advice, in hopes of winning the game. This is because climbing through gold can sometimes be easier than climbing through silver, and players find themselves reaching gold 2 or 1 and playing with hardstuck plats, noticing a big skill gap, and getting intimidated.
This kind is the most friendly group of people, save for mid-high diamond. They are harder to tilt than silvers, and don't give up as often.
Platinum - the biggest division by the sheer size of the collective Ego, players here are mechanically above golds and silvers, and have more game knowledge. Most players when they reach plat get an ego boost. They made it into the top 10% of all players, and that feels good. They are so happy with that identity in fact, that they would rather int, afk, and flame everyone (including the enemy team), than admit that they failed.
I've seen mechanical gods in plat 5 that put many diamonds i've seen to shame in the sheer skill they have with their respective champions, but are still somehow hardstuck. The thing is, plats (especially low plats) are the easiest group of players to tilt, and this is what prevents them from further climbing. Even after a slight missplay they give up, and every little advantage the enemy has seems like an insurmountable obstacle. When winning, plats feel good, and they taunt, mock, flash champion mastery after each trade (especially true for yasuo mains), and are generally insufferable pricks that get their high by putting someone down. When losing they lose all hope and games are finished quickly. While flaming their own team is something everyone does, plats also like to flame the enemy. Phrases like: "I can't believe this boosted X won", or "X is bad, you don't deserve win", are commonplace. Even when there is room for a comeback, they are tilted, and timid, too hesitant to commit to a play, and often miss the chance to win the odd game. Low plat is also the best division to smurf in for low/mid diamonds if they are looking for that ego boost when enemies cry and blame their teammates because of your actions.
Low diamond (d5 mostly) - Here are the players that improved enough to reach diamond in terms of mindset and skill, but are peaked. They start to meet really strong and knowledgeable players and are either intimidated, or in denial. If they can overcome their fear and insecurity, they usually make it to mid-high diamond, and stay there until the season's end. The rest can't admit to themselves that there are other players who make their skill and knowledge seem trivial, and remain hardstuck at d5, with low mmr so that they play with plats mostly. Their ego is big, but they don't tilt or give up as easily, and are generally better to play with. While winning, they still taunt like plats because they play with plats who do the same, but when losing they keep playing, hoping that the enemy makes a critical mistake.
Mid diamond (d4, d3, d2, low d1) - These are the players that have first overcome obstacles within themselves, then managed to be better than 99% of the other players. They have met masters and challengers, sometimes even famous streamers and pros, and they know that even with their hard work and dedication, along with undeniable talent, there are some people that are just too good to beat. Instead of being in denial or intimidated, they are humbled and inspired. They flame less than other divisions, and are very hard to tilt as well. Comebacks here are regular, and players are patient, aware, and very skilled. Afk-ers with legitimate internet problems are seen more often that intentional feeders and trollers, and people are generally more mature and calm. In my personal experience, these are the best people to play normals or aram with.
High diamond - Players who've seen the monsters from master and challenger, and said: yeah thats me, so they kept on climbing, and are aspiring to be top elo one day. Most of the mare 'hardstuck', because it takes some luck to get to master if your skill is only slightly above average for diamond 1, and there are limited opportunities to climb. In terms of mentality, they are sometimes not as friendly as middle diamonds, but are still leagues ahead of any other division.
Master, challenger: i'll talk about these when i get there, sorry folks. Seen too few of them to really have an impression.
Now, some advice on what mindset to maintain when climbing through all of these:
Bronze: learn the general game mechanics, and what each champion does, don't take champions that seem good or OP, take what you know and stick with it
Silver: learning to not flame everyone you dislike is very helpful here, have a positive outlook, and don't tilt if enemy gets an advantage early, closing games is hard for this elo, and 50 minute tennis games are often seen here. Take something that is strong lategame, but is not very squishy, like jax.
Gold: Here you need to learn not to get tilted when your teammates do something stupid, and the enemy team does not. Keep a positive outlook, and sometimes try to give advice to people that seem to be struggling but don't auto-flame everyone, they might listen and help you win the game. Any champion is good here, had some dude tell me that lee sin is god in lategame, and that twitch is bad because he gets instagibbed.
Plat: Here you need to learn not to get tilted when your teammates blame you for their own mistakes, or the enemy bm's after a kill or a gank. Sometimes it helps to try and calm down a teammate that just says 'GG' out of the blue, with something along the lines of: 'Don't worry dude, its just bad luck', 'Don't sweat it dude, easy win for us, the enemy team is bad' or 'Chill man, you are better than him, just respect his advantage and wait for the right moment', where you attempt to stop their ego-induced tilt by telling them that either they are good, or the enemy is bad. If this does not work, Mute button is your friend. Don't try to point out teammates mistakes unless they can be repeated in the same game, they probably know what they did wrong, but telling them might trigger them further and make them tilt. When losing, try to make the team group, and focus on doing your own role. Don't be overconfident because most of the time the losing teams are too timid to follow what they perceive as 'risky' plays.
~~If you are really desperate, try camping one lane and sometimes ask why the enemy jungler is not ganking or something, or win lane and say something along the lines: 'better X wins'~~
Low diamond: Same as plat, but this time you will also start meeting a lot more people that just outclass you in every way. Try learning not only from your own mistakes, but also from the enemie's successes, as sometimes their strategies are repeatable, and their logic might help you along the way. Don't get overconfident and be careful even when far ahead, as your mistakes are worth a lot more here than any division below.
Well, that is it, if anyone wants to discuss anything, feel free. If you think I am wrong or your personal experience differs, feel free to express how and why is that. And if any challenger or master sees this, consider giving input on the mentality of the people in your class, and how it is different from other divisions you've been in.