Why I play League of Legends

When I say I play League of Legends, most people I know roll their eyes and sigh. Despite League of Legends having a literal fuckton of players, it seems that 90% of people I know really dislike the game. They look at me as if I’m some sort of masochist maniac. Well they’re wrong. There’s other reasons why I like League of Legends.

The first reason is that I like the art style. Sadly, the style has been changing over the years, going for a more detailed, darker, Dota look. But when I started playing, everything was bright colours and cheer. I’ve always been a sucker for cartoony graphics and League of Legends filled that quota well. It still does with a lot of my preferred characters. Dota 2 looks nice too, but League of Legends has this thing about it, bright colours and brighter characters.

The second reason is that, originally, the tutorial for League of Legends was FAR better than the one for Dota 2. When I started playing, (I tried Dota 2 first), there was no tutorial and I knew for a fact that Dota 2 was a hard game. League of Legends had a basic tutorial that showed you movement and how a full game played out. When Dota 2 DID get a tutorial, I did slowly play through it, but that was after I’d gotten into League of Legends proper. Then I tried a Players VS Bots game and got raged at. I clearly wasn’t playing with people on the same skill level as me. I just got berated all game – an awful experience for a first match with people.

I like the characters in League of Legends as well. The world seems more ‘together’. Everyone’s from a place, not a bunch of parallel universes or voids or whatever. League of Legends wasn’t just the name of the game, it was an institute within the game world which connected everything together. The League of Legends was the denizens of Runeterra’s way of stopping the world being destroyed. It meant that monsters like Cho’Gath are kept in captivity, curious beings like Vel’Koz head there to learn stuff rather than disintegrating entire villages and people like Garen come along to represent their countries rather than starting wars. It’s more homely, if that makes sense. Or at least it did, before Riot decided to retcon the entirety of their lore then didn’t do anything to fix it. We’re still fucking waiting, Riot.

What I also really like is the simpler mechanics. When it comes to video games, I am not a quick person – I’m actually very forgetful. Too much stuff in a game that I have to remember and I just get all annoyed and flustered. League of Legends has many mechanics that are, well, simpler than they are in Dota 2. Being more complicated doesn’t make a game better, it just makes it harder. Same can be said for games being simple. There’s also less punishment if you die, making snowballing through and winning a bit harder.

But Dota 2 does a lot of things better than LoL. Its champion models are better. Its pre-game client is better. It has replays and better, worldwide servers. Cosmetics are cheaper and all heroes are unlocked from the start. Still, I stick to League of Legends.

There’s a bad reason why I play LoL though. Dota 2 gets everything. Originally, every other game was an experiment to see what would work in Dota 2. A lot of things Dota 2 now has are things that were tested in other Valve games, TF2 in particular. But now, the guinea pigs are sitting alone in a cage while Dota 2 gets all the amazing stuff. It’s getting a whole new game client and a whole new engine on Source 2. No other current game gets that, not even the second most played game on Steam, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Dota 2 this and Dota 2 that. I’m tired of it.

Basically, I play League of Legends in spite of Dota 2.

I’m a bad person.

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