League Of Legends Announces Season One

Riot Games send word that their “Season One” event for League Of Legends is getting under way. That means a content update for everyone, but also a big old championship. Here’s the bit where it gets interesting for serious players:

Players who finish the season at the top of the League of Legends ladder will have the opportunity to participate in the Season One finals tournament which boasts a total prize purse of $100,000.

Riot are also celebrating this event with a cinematic trailer, which I’ve posted below. Watch for more information over on the official site.


  1. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    Is this game even any good?

    • TotalBiscuit says:

      Yes, it is.

    • Spd from Russia says:

      Its DoTa clone except more casual and you have very limited selection of heroes, unless you buy.
      There is no public rating, killstats or replays so the community is less hardcore (thus less flaming occures)

      very good trailer cinematics btw

    • Garg says:

      There’s no limitation on heroes if you play for free. The micropayment system relies on buying more game currency, of which there are two types. One that you can earn just by playing anyway, and can be spent on unlocking new heroes and also on small buffs for your character (in the form of glyphs). The other can only be obtained with real money, however is restricted to aesthetic things like alternate skins for the heroes or a buff to help you earn experience points faster (as in the overarching “summoner” xp, not xp in individual matches).

      Quick: it’s not a money gouging free to play game.

    • Mac says:

      I’ve never played DotA – how easy is this game to pick up and learn?

    • cyrenic says:


      This new patch actually just added the option to play ranked games which will give you a public rating.

    • Maltose says:

      @Mac: League of Legends (LoL) is much easier to get into than DotA. If you play the tutorial and 1 or two practice games against bots (shouldn’t take more than an hour and a half or so), you’ll be able to play competently. Not necessarily well, but you’ll at the very least know what you’re doing. The UI for LoL is infinitely more user and noob-friendly than DotA’s.

    • pakoito says:

      Kids F2P (free to ‘pay) version of DOTA. I’m sticking to HoN, that’s DOTA on a new engine with the best netcode ever seen in a RTS.

    • Farewell says:

      Don’t praise HoN’s netcode when matches run on dedicated servers instead of peer-to-peer like most other RTS.

  2. Daniel Klein says:

    (I felt so bad for sending in the last couple of LoL tidbits because it smelled awfully like me tooting my own horn, so I didn’t send this in. I should have!)

    So before I say anything, I feel I should put a disclaimer out: I work for Riot Games Europe. I’m the German community manager for this game. I’m obviously as biased as you’ll get.

    But I fucking love this game to pieces.

    There’s this old adage about doing something you love for money, and then no longer loving it. Well, didn’t happen here. I became the lead QA person at GOA Games in charge of LoL Europe last year after playing the game in early (June 2009) closed beta and falling in love with it, and I’ve been pretty much playing it non-stop ever since, leaving my position at GOA when Riot set up shop in Europe to join the Riot Team directly. I’m still playing the game all the time, and if anything, I love it more.

    So for the uninitiated: this is a DotA-style 5v5 (or 3v3) session-based game. It’s an RTS-like game where you control only one hero (and something a pet the hero summons temporarily). There’s two bases, connected through three lanes. The bases spawn minions, minions meet in the middle of the map to fight it out, and your heroes dive into battle, gaining gold and experience from killing enemy minions (and heroes, if they can!). They level up skills with the experience and buy items with the gold until one of the two bases is destroyed.

    This genre (we’re trying to make the name MOBA–Multiplayer Online Battle Arena–happen, but I’m not sure if it’s catching on ;P) is EXTREMELY competitive. Because it’s team based, there are potentially four very angry 12 year olds somewhere out there on the internet who will yell at you when you mess up. That said, from my own experience our community is a LOT more pleasant than DotA/HoN communities tend to be. We actively encourage good behaviour and seek out and ban players who verbally harass their fellow gamers excessively.

    That said, your first few games will still be intense. We also have a number of systems to try and match new players only with other new players–there’s a newbie island, some very sophisticated coding behind the scenes to separate smurfs (really good players who make new accounts to enjoy a spot of noob-bashing) from real new players, etc. I’ve played a good bit of DotA and some HoN during their open beta, and there’s something in LoL that makes it just so much more enjoyable to me.

    Also, have we mentioned it’s free? ;P

  3. Lemming says:

    @ Corrupt_Tiki

    Ive been playing it for around 6 months now which should answer your question. Its free anyway so why not give it a go? :)

  4. MrMud says:

    Yea, its actually really good. And since its free there is very little reason not to try it.

  5. Wichtel says:

    You forgot your main “selling” point – it is for free.

  6. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    @ at all above replies. ty

    When I get my Internet cap back I shall give it a shot (I quite liked DotA). Now I have to split my time between RA2, ArmA 2, the GF and this haha, looking forward to it now =D

  7. Imperialles says:

    Cool trailer! I played a bit of LoL when it was in beta. I still prefer HoN, though. It just feels a little harder and less forgiving, and there’s little room for error. I guess I just gravitate towards that sort of games in general.

  8. Malawi Frontier Guard says:

    The main thing seperating this from any other DotA-type game is that its community is not a complete hellhole.

  9. What happened to good ol Anonymous says:

    What Daniel Klein forgot to mention is that Riot has a knack for rushing unfinished updates. If you want to spend your first days in League of Legends reading about soft server lockdowns or surprise maintenances, this is the day to start.

    Give it a couple of days/weeks.

    • Daniel Klein says:

      Make that a couple of days ;) Our main problem right now is that too many people want to play, which is very good problem indeed.

    • What happened to good ol Anonymous says:

      Popping a new video on G4 to lure in more players when your servers could barely hold the original population was not a solid decision.

    • Kommissar Nicko says:

      Everything has mellowed out considerably. I couldn’t get the damn client to work properly during peak hours on the day of the big release, but later that night things calmed down, and by today everything was hunky-dory.

  10. Burningpet says:

    I find HoN better in almost every aspect. the only good thing about LoL is that it’s Matchmaking system works faster than HoN.

    while it is true that the community in LoL is better and arent all nerd raging tryhards, but from my exprience, i rather have the ignoreable haters than those quitters you get in lol. everygame i played, atleast one disconnects and ruins the game.

    • Xocrates says:

      Quitters is probably the thing Riot had tried the hardest to prevent. Nowadays I only ever get quitters in practice games, which I don’t particularly care for the outcome (though granted it’s still annoying).

      Conversely, I got the HoN beta, I gave up after being abused for being a noob in a clearly marked Noob game.

      If LoL has better matchmaking (by your admission), is more noob friendly, a better community (by you admission), the leaver issue isn’t nearly as bad as you make it sound, and it’s free: What reason does someone have to play HoN other than being a hardcore player?

    • televizor says:

      I’ve played both HoN and LoL during their betas (played DotA first of course) and I’m still playing them now (HoN on a friend’s account every now and then).
      And you’re right, lot of nerd hate in Hon and I mean it. Played it since the beta and now the times are getting harder (read: I win less now than then).
      What I hated most about LoL was that everyone was a noob, nobody was calling miss, no ganking. I’m beginning to see that this changed now.
      Also HoN has a very low player base (25.000 online at all time) and 3/4 of them will kick your ass into next week and boast about it and your team mates will hate on you if you’re a first time player.
      Of course, lots of differences in the heroes, mechanics and all (HoN is a DotA clone while LoL didn’t just copy the whole thing).
      My only issue with LoL is the game’s speed. It’s way to slow.

    • Lilliput King says:

      I liked LoL a fair bit, though I don’t really play it any more. I’ll point out that it has a hell of a lot on HoN in terms of interface and character design – who people are, what things on the interface mean and what they do is clear from the offset, in a very TF2-stylee. And like TF2, it copes with the usual new-game learning curve very well, without having to make the game easy or simple.

      To seasoned HoN players, this stuff won’t matter. To anyone else, its pretty important.

      The other thing is that it automatically slots you into games based on your win/loss ratio among other factors, so when you start out you’ll suffer from smurfing and leaving, but it’s not really representative.

  11. Kid A says:

    I’ve been having massive fps drop-off issues with the Season One update as it is right now, so definitely give it a a few days. That said, it’s a very good DotA clone – and you don’t have to buy heroes, just win a few games and you’ll have enough points to buy all but the most expensive (6300 points where one win will usually net you around 100) heroes – and it’s definitely not a case of “more expensive = better”.
    The community is generally nicer than DotA or HoN’s was when I played – seeing 4 or 5 players say “GL HF” at the start is pretty common, and seeing someone ragequit or moan about his/her teammates is pretty rare. The dick to rational human being ratio is pretty good, basically.

  12. roy7 says:

    I’d never played DotA either. I found HoN pretty confusing, esp when trying to buy items and gave up on it. LoL I found easier to learn/play for some reason, plus I like the way the store works (I’m talking about during gameplay when you buy items for your character, not stuff out of the game). LoL is one of the main games I play these days. It’s really darn fun.

  13. bill says:

    So it’s a game about good guys attacking girls with big boobs?

    Always wondered what dota stood for…

  14. dibs says:

    LoL is awesome fun. I haven’t played Dota or HoN so i can’t comment, but i do know that i really enjoy LoL. And its free, which is very nice for a unemployed layabout like me. I have give them a few euro to buy some skins, but honestly, this is a premium game that you can enjoy fully for free so give it a whirl!

  15. Chalky says:

    Yeah, I got into HoN beta and the learning curve is apparently a brick wall – despite having played LoL for months. Players are abusive and elitest and apparently match making is either terrible or exploitable because my first game ever probably shouldn’t have been in a game filled with people who knew exactly what they were doing and beat the hell out of me while I was still trying to work out where they’d hidden the “shop” button.

    LoL on the other hand, comes with a tutorial and the match making system seems to be extremely good. Was very easy to get into and very fun to play. 100% recommend it.

  16. cyrenic says:

    League of Legends is easily the best free game I’ve ever played. I’ve been playing it since November of last year and still play it almost every night. It’s one of the few competitive games that I’ve seen do microtransactions correctly. And apparently it’s working out for the developer because they’ve got over 3 million registered users and are hiring like crazy.

    The game is also accessible enough that my wife enjoys playing it with me. I never thought I’d get my wife to play a competitive multiplayer game :P.

  17. Flimgoblin says:


    Really like this game, it’s in my “big list of games I really like but have no time to play” :(

  18. Hatch says:

    LoL is deliriously fun to play. It’s easy to get into and free, which means that more of my friends will play it and get hooked so I can have premade teams with them. Half of my WoW guild has been converted and we play it together almost every day, and every new person falls in love with it.

    So yeah, it’s good.

    Not only is the gameplay great, but the art direction and creativity in the character designs are top-notch.

    HoN literally copy/pasted the aging DotA into a new engine. LoL borrows generously from DotA, but the heroes are new, varied, and *fun*, which is something HoN keeps forgetting to add. I’ll ride the back of a Yeti while fighting a steam-powered robot and a little girl with a giant flaming teddy bear any day of the week over Generic Knight 0043C.

    That said, LoL does suffer from stability issues and tends to take too many cues from WoW (compare their new interface and web site to the wow armory for a laugh). Servers get tired out roughly every other day for a short time. Matchmaking is fast and sophisticated, but in such a team-centric game it has a hard time matching up individuals well, since it’s hard to tell who was responsible for a given win/loss.

    But it’s free to play and the list of free champions rotates every week so you can try new stuff, and you earn points to buy new champs just by playing the game.

  19. Evernight says:

    The game is very good. If you liked DOTA at all you will find this a vast improvement. Its also free to play and it doesnt take much of a PC to run it.

    I am a big WoW PvPer and it weened me off that pretty well…. for free even.

  20. Arathain says:

    Yup, I like it too. I don’t play super-regularly, but I love to dip in now and again. Very enjoyable. Great character design. Shout out, Singed players!

    One of the things I really like is how honest to the whole free-to-play thing the game is. Everything you need (runes, characters) can be purchased with currency earned from play. I haven’t spent a pennycent, and it is genuinely practical to do this. If I start to play more regularly I will probably quite happily drop some cash on it and buy some of the characters I’ve been enjoying and some good, verstatile runes. A neat Singed custom skin might hasten this.

  21. Kommissar Nicko says:

    I’ve been playing LoL since the beta, and before that was a die-hard DotAman. In general LoL is a lot more accessible than DotA, because the mechanics are a little less obtuse (when you get stunned, slowed, feared, etc. it says STUNNED, ETC. above your head) and the game emphasizes team fights quite a bit more. One person getting ridiculously stacked and annihilating everyone is a fairly rare occurrence unlike in DotA, and even a disadvantaged team will have a decent shot at winning provided the coordination is there.

    It’s a refinement of DotA’s teamplay mechanics. Probably my favorite game of the decade.

  22. bjbrains says:

    I have to agree that it really is my favorite FTP game. I played a ton of HoN during beta, and I have to say that LoL is a lot more accessible for new players, a lot more forgiving of said noob mistakes (But still very rewarding of individual skill and group coordination), has much more appealing characters (They’re all very cool conceptually and mechanically). The game is truly FTP; there are no in-game advantages for spending money. Not to mention the gameplay is an extension of that which made DoTA huge.

  23. Captain "Kunkka" Obvious says:

    LoL was entertaining for a while. My main problem when I first started was leavers and server problems, but after the first introductory matches (as well as leaver consequences they put into place), the leaver problem seems to be fixed. The servers were still sketchy while I was playing though with random parts disappearing and chat often not working.

    Has the general server instability been fixed yet?

    Later on my biggest problem was continually being put up against level 30s when I was level 12 or so. levels in this game grant an advantage outside of hero selection, unlike DotA or HoN, because of glyphs and masteries.

    As a DotA player (I only play on LAN as the online community is awful), my biggest problem was not enough incentive to kill otheover leveled hero was negligible comr players, where the experience gain from killing even an pared to staying in your lane. The lack of denials in LoL and cheap potions are nice though.

    • Captain "Kunkka" Obvious says:

      apparently my words in the last paragraph got messed up
      *my biggest problem was a lack of incentive to kill other heroes. Even the exp gain from over leveled heroes was negligible compared to staying in your lane*

    • Riotpoll says:

      The problems with the matchmaking ( I encountered them from a similar stage) have been fixed now. Rarely face anyone more than 4 levels higher than yourself.

  24. Solcry says:

    League of Legends is an awful introduction to Heroes of Newerth, to be fair. The order I played it was DoTA, then HoN, and then (because I’m cheap) to LoL. I’ve been playing LoL for the last few months and I find that I do miss HoN.

    Thats not saying I don’t like LoL – on the contrary, I love the game. Its casual, its fun, and its endearing. However, I never got immersed into the game like I did into HoN. The pace of LoL is horribly slow, and trying to move from LoL to HoN will make it seem like everything is going on fast-forward. Yes, the community is shit – but after you get the hang of it they stop badgering you. Thats not excusing them, but it does tamper down. HoN’s engine is by far graphically superior, and the interface more polished.

    And the fact that the game doesn’t suffer downtime like LoL is also a plus.