Worth Getting Back into League of Legends?

A week back, I learned that WizKids, a tabletop gaming company, just scored the license for DotA 2. Soon, they will sell HeroClix miniatures under that new license.

Thinking about DotA 2 got me remembering, in turn, League of Legends, which I enjoyed briefly for about one weekend in 2010.

Does anybody here still play regularly? Is it still a friendly environment for a new player? Have there been substantive changes in the past two years?


Are you kidding? If you only played it for one week then you were never into it in the first place. A more appropriate question would be, should you try again to get into it for the first time? And the answer is yes. It is a lot of fun and it has become one of the most popular games in the world. Also it is free.

You might be remembering the wrong game - ‘friendly environment for new players’? If you avoid all the online bits (ie., other people), then maybe. Otherwise it is the most hate-filled game I’ve ever seen. Actually, co-op vs. the AI isn’t too bad and is a well-needed addition.

Not that it is a bad game, or that you should stay away. I’ve just never paired LoL (or any MOBA game) with ‘friendly’.

My son and I have just dipped our toes into League of Legends in the last month, and I have been quite frankly almost scared to even touch this game because of its community reputation. So far, so good though. We’ve practiced against bots and played a few public games and so far haven’t experienced the hate. It is a lot of fun, at least until we have an experience that colours that to the point of it not being fun. Time will tell I guess.

Back in 2010, I found LoL much more approachable than StarCraft-based DoTA. Although I occasionally did encounter mean-spirited behavior from both fandoms, it was much the rarer on LoL, especially when I avoided trying to join top-ranked matches.

I guess I’m asking if the mechanics have changed all that much in two years.

League’s nastiness is third after HoN and the original DOTA, Valve is doing a moderately okay job keeping the worst out of DOTA2, but really, they are all pretty vile at almost all levels. That, and the absurd levels of depth/amount to learn are the biggest things that keep people away (there’s quite a bit to slog through before the game just “clicks” in your brain completely and you can see the full picture, and until you do, you’re likely to make mistakes that cause assholes to yell at you)


In Riot’s defense, they are trying their best to make the game less caustic. They have whole crowdsource anti-grief committees and such (just a shame that they need them). I consider this well ahead of Valve at the moment, where the default in-game announcer shouts HOLY SHIT a lot - I don’t really think that encourages keeping the worst out :)

FWIW, I started playing LoL over the past month, and at least so far have found the community’s reputation to be greatly exaggerated. In 100-ish games, probably 80 of them have passed without a single hostile or unfriendly comment made in chat, and the remainder have all been on the shallow end of the online offensiveness pool (the occasional ‘STFU’ or ‘_____ you suck’, rather than truly nasty slurs). Annoying, but not game-ruining. Of course, that may change after reaching the level cap and starting to play ranked games where people get more serious about it, but that’s a long process.

If you stick to normal games you’ll have less hostility. Also knowing any other people you can play with on a team helps so you don’t have the random factor of who you get for teammates.

LoL is tame if you are used to Xbox Live. At least you aren’t HEARING the 14 year olds insult your mother.

The PC fps crowd is far worse than anything you run across in LoL or Xbox Live.

I’ve always wondered who these toxic people are? Broken down people living in one-room apartments with no life? People who were the victims of child molesting?

I don’t know anyone who acts like that, but apparently there is a lot of them.

Competitiveness brings out the salt in people, especially when e-peen is involved.

Not like this. At least, not in normal people I socialize with.

I have played LoL regularly since open beta, and the worst thing I can say about their design is that it lost most of its rough edges and quirkyness. Actual variety and balance have steadily improved. So have pricing, matchmaking and community moderation. It’s the best (and probably the largest) multiplayer game currently available.

Starts with HAVING to depend strangers who you have no particular reason to trust, forgive or respect. Couple this with the whole “snowball” effect – after the earliest part of the game, some people (possibly you) are going to wind up 0-something.

This can be for many reasons, and these reasons forge the first path towards hate – disagreements over who is responsible for poor results. Even not disagreeing can lead pave the way to future problems – bad players can get sullen, critical better players can feel justified blaming the worse player(s) for whatever goes wrong later – regardless of whether it’s particularly their fault.

Even if you have agreeable people forgiving poor early performance, the rich get richer nature of the game makes it likely that following the mid game, the poor early performer will look worse and worse.

One final aspect of the game making this dynamic worse is the depth issue – There’s so much to learn, so many different situations, and elements of partial knowledge, that in practice everyone is repeatedly committing sub-optimal plays – or at least doing so from someone else’s perspective. Once whatever good cheer or respect in the team falls away, the complexity of the game is constantly generating flashpoints for anger.

The best way to play and learn the game is with friends who are willing to play with or teach you. Otherwise it’s painful working with anonymous teammates.
Only warning I can give you about the game is things change quickly. New Heroes being released and old ones being rebalanced means that a months break makes coming back very difficult. I tried to come back, I was what I would consider to be a good/advanced player and things were so different I was practically at square 1 again.

There is a Qt3 Chat Group in game, though no one is ever in there. Sign up - who knows, we could actually get a group together.

As a warning, I am terrible (you only have to look to my comments in the main League of Legends thread to understand how terrible).

At worst, there’s always beginner-level co-operative play vs. A.I. bots. Very good way to get one’s footing in the basics. Ignore any troublemakers, play nice with rest. As mentioned many times, plenty of tips available in various free strategy guides & videos online.

Game remains free, but probably best experienced after purchasing a character or 3 to specialize, since free characters cycle in and out regularly. Developer seems to be focusing more on cranking out new characters for sale as quickly as possible–suggest ignoring these and focusing on more established characters with more of a body of tips available should this little relationship prove serious.

Game seems to be more popular than ever so no shortage of competition, regardless of quality.

I think this was more true in the last year, but they have noted that they are intentionally slowing down the new character releases in the coming year.

I agree that for awhile, they were really releasing too often.