How does League of Legends work? LoL explained
How does League of Legends work? Our guide explains all.
What is League of Legends?
League of Legends is a free-to-play multiplayer online battle arena game, also known as a MOBA, that is played on PC.
Since its release in 2009, League of Legends has grown into one of the world’s most popular video games.
Developer Riot Games estimate the game attracts close to 8 million concurrent users every day, with more than 100 million active players each month.
League of Legends has a global competitive scene, with the game playing a big part in the development of esports into a worldwide phenomenon.
League of Legends is the world’s most-watched esport, beating the likes of Dota 2, Fortnite and CS:GO.
How does League of Legends work?
The game pits two teams of five players against each other, with each player taking on the role of a champion.
There are over 140 champions to choose from, with each champion possessing different strengths, weaknesses, abilities and stats.
The aim of the game is to destroy the opponent’s Nexus – the building at the centre of their base – after bypassing a series of defensive structures known as towers.
The two Nexus buildings are located at opposite sides of the map, in the lower-left and upper-right corners.
Each Nexus continually spawns computer-controlled characters, known as minions, which automatically advance towards the enemy team’s base and attack enemy champions.
All champions start each match at level 1, gradually levelling up throughout the game to a maximum of level 18.
Champions level up by gaining experience and earning gold to buy items – experience and gold are earned by killing units (computer-controlled enemies), destroying towers and by killing enemy champions.
As players move up through the levels, they unlock different abilities for their champions, and can strengthen these abilities in a number of different ways.
The higher the level, the stronger a champion becomes and the more damage they are able to inflict on enemies and buildings.
When a champion dies they are not out of the game – they will respawn at their Nexus after a certain amount of time has passed.
As both teams grow in power throughout a match, one is eventually able to gain the upper hand and make a final push for victory.
What are the different League of Legends roles?
When played competitively, League of Legends is always played on a map called Summoner’s Rift.
Summoner’s Rift is split into four different sections: the Top Lane (Top), Bottom Lane (Bot), Middle Lane (Mid) and the Jungle.
Every professional player specialises in a certain role, with each role relating to a certain section of the map.
The five roles within a professional team are: Top Laner, Mid Laner, Jungler, ADC (Attack Damage Carry) and Support.
Top Laners will operate solely in the Top Lane, Mid Laners in the Middle Lane, ADC and Support in the Bottom Lane while Junglers are free to roam.
Each role requires different skills from players – some require you to operate alone, while others involve more teamwork.
When did League of Legends start?
League of Legends was released by Riot Games on 27 October 2009.
The game is constantly updated with new patches to keep it fresh, fun and fair.
How does League of Legends esports work?
Professional League of Legends competition is overseen by Riot Games, the studio which created the game.
League of Legends is one of the world’s biggest esports, with competitions taking place all over the globe.
There are four leagues at the top level of professional League of Legends competition, with each taking place in a specific region.
The League of Legends Championship Series (LCS) is the main competition in North America and Canada, the League of Legends European Championships (LEC) takes place in Europe, the League of Legends Champions Korea (LCK) operates in South Korea, and the League of Legends Pro League (LPL) takes place in China.
Competing teams gain points relating to their performance in competitions held throughout the year, with the ultimate aim being qualification for the League of Legends World Championship.
The 2019 World Championship, held in locations across Europe, offered up a total prize pool of $2.2m. The winners, FunPlus Phoenix from China, went home with $835,000.
The tournament drew a peak concurrent viewership of 3,985,787.
Which team has won most League of Legends World Championships?
SK Telecom T1 from South Korea hold the current record with three World Championship victories.
They won in 2013, 2015 and 2016.
Who’s the best League of Legends player?
South Korean star ‘Faker’ is widely considered to be the best League of Legends player of all time.
The Mid Laner, who plays for SK Telecom T1, is known for his high mechanical skill and his versatile champion selections.
Faker is the first player to reach both 1,000 and 2,000 kills in the League of Legends Champions Korea, and the second to reach 500 games played.
He is one of only two players to have won three World Championship titles, including an MVP award in 2016.
He has also won the All-Star Paris in 2014, the Mid-Season Invitational in 2016 and 2017, the IEM World Championship in 2016 and the LCK eight times, including three MVP awards.
He has won a total of $1,254,240.23 in prize money over the course of his career.