League of Legends by Riot Games is not just a Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) game, but a true International competitive sport. It blends action elements such as real time strategy, role-playing and tower defense in a free-to-play game packed with action and unique gameplay elements.
The mechanics of the game are fairly simple. You chose a champion that has 5 unique abilities and join one of the two teams that will fight each other in the default map, named Summoner’s Rift, with the goal of destroying the enemy Nexus. The Nexus can be reached via 3 lanes which are guarded by towers and AI minions. At the beginning of each game you start at level 1. You are also given gold that you can use to buy items that you need to enter and survive in battle.
Besides the in-game level, League of Legends has an account level system through which you can progress up to level 30 in order to be matched correctly with players of same the level as you.
Graphics Game Options
League of Legends can be played on almost all types of PC and Mac computers. The game runs smoothly but this comes at a cost – graphic quality is not the best there is although they still make the game very appealing. The game options are very flexible and offer lots of customization options for all your pc and personal needs. The themed sound tracks, character dialogues and animations are all excellent.
Game Modes and Queue
For players that don’t find the initial Summoner’s Rift map satisfactory, they will be glad to find out that there are other vengeful battle fields ready to be conquered.
Howling Abyss, also known as “Murder Bridge” is a one way lane map, where random champions are assigned to you in the queue through the implemented game mode named ARAM (“All Random, All Mid”). Crystal Scar is a map mode that focuses on capturing territories in order to overwhelm the enemy Nexus. Last but not least, the Twisted Treeline is a map mode that forces players to cooperate and focus extra effort in the game, due to the limit of three-versus-three queue capacity.
The maps don’t force the player to group with strangers. The game’s queue offers the possibility to play with a mix of friends and strangers or exclusively with friends in normal, draft pick and/or custom games, thus having full control over how and what you want to play.
Diversity is the key in League of legends and players enjoy this fact, since we all are unique and like different things. With this in mind, players also have access to an AI platform, where they can compete versus bots, on Beginner or Intermediate difficulty maps. This aspect adds a flavor of finesse and elegance since the game is intended for all types of players that need their demands meet.
Classes, Masteries and Runes
Players can chose from 7 classes of champions, such as: Assassin, Mage, Marksmen, Fighter, Tank and Support. Each class has unique abilities that help your champion prevail in team fights and ensure the victory of the match. RIOT has developed a neat way of keeping the players invested in the game, by unlocking champion permanently using influence points (earned by playing matches) or Riot points (points which can be bought with real money). With over 100 champions and growing, players have a wide range of options to pick from each class. One interesting factor that can be pointed out is that RIOT is very involved in the game development, thus creating an original lore for places, events and even each individual champion.
Scaling your account level has also its perks. With each level you unlock, you are given the possibility to use a mastery point in your customizable mastery pages. This will offer a small boost from the beginning of the game, making you more durable and raising your survival chances in each new round. Runes, like masteries offer small special buffs, but this are categorized into 3 tires available at different milestones in your level account hierarchy.
The True Challenge
Veteran player that look to make a name for themselves can begin the true challenge, after level 30, when they are offered the chance to become a true master summoner, by participating in solo, duo or team ranked games. All victories in a ranked game bring you a step closer to a higher ladder tire, such as: bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond and finally challenger. Also all tires are organized in 5 divisions which require a certain number of wins to progress through.
Rewards and Punishment
Having won a game doesn’t always mean you have a supportive team behind you. Whenever players tend to bend the rules of League of Legends (the Summoner’s Code), other players have the possibility to punish the guilty party through the report system. This in turn ends up in the Tribunal where it is trialed by other players, who will be compensated for their involvement with a small IP reward.
True competitors can be honored, by the other players, through the honor system, at the end of each game, which will reward the player’s character frame with a symbolic and esthetic ribbon. This ribbons stand for player that are: Friendly, Helpful, Great in Teamwork or Honorable Opponent.
The Thrill of the Fight
Already in Season 4 (each season lasting one year), the game has an adaptive learning curve that changes from season to season. Gamers always have something new to learn as RIOT gives its best efforts to keep the game fresh with new colorful and incentive ideas that have a strong feedback and support from within the gaming community.
Each battle possess a new and unique situation through randomized elements such as weapon critical effect or a chance to end up with an enemy champion that can counter your own and the examples are endless. As the game expands, so are all the rebalances of the maps and champions as well as the constant change of items and spells.
The thrill of the fight comes as the team tries to complete all the objectives, which include: eliminating the enemy towers and inhibitors, securing the dragon and Baron Nashor, heaving high creep scores, warding the map for vision and cooperating well in team fights to take down the opponents.
League of Legends is a dedicated free-to-play game for a wide variety of players and fans that can play as a lone-wolf-pack or as a team having a blast. After spending the first 30 levels learning the basics and improving your game, you will most likely find yourself addicted to LoL. This is a game that has 12 million daily active players. The reason why it is so incredibly popular, in my opinion, is that unlike many other free to play online games, in LoL skill triumphs over money every time. That’s why I play.