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Is the entry barrier too high in League of Legends?


League of Legends is getting closer to celebrating its thirteenth full release anniversary in November. The game has changed a lot over the years, especially with the player base gradually growing to the levels it is today.

Despite the community having a perception of the game slowly “dying,” the player count says otherwise. LoL is still one of the biggest games on the planet, with a steady 120+ million active monthly players for almost two years now. Not to mention LoL is experiencing massive growth in China, which is one of the biggest markets in the world with the most growth potential.

Piling on new content is a double-edged sword

Riot Games have done an excellent job of keeping the game with constant updates and new content, so the game doesn’t get too dull. On the other hand, they successfully bring new players to the League Universe through various projects such as new games, Arcane, music, esports, etc. 

However, keeping the game too fresh could hurt League of Legends in the long run, as the barrier to entry increases each time they add something new to the game.

Back in 2009, when the game launched, there were only 40 Champions to choose from when you queued up. Everything was also much simpler from abilities, items, to the Rift, runes, game mechanics, etc.

The good old days – via Riot Games

It wasn’t very challenging to pick up the game as you would play or encounter all Champions quite often, so you would quickly understand what it does.

200+ collective years of professional game design experience later, League of Legends has 161 Champions, with Nilah being the latest.

New Champions are just too much

With the availability of so many Champions now, it has gradually become more complicated to understand and master them over the years. Completely new mechanics that change the game keep being added frequently. 

With the game evolving and players improving, the Champions became more advanced. However, many League fans believe Riot has been “crossing the line” in the past few years. Some of the new Champions have way too many tools in their kits, especially compared to some of the old Champions.

The learning curve is massive 

It can all be overwhelming to someone trying League for the first time. Even if you want to play only a few Champions, you still have to learn what each of them does. Not to mention getting a grasp on other essential stuff such as items, neutral monsters, experience, summoner spells and the like.

Even seasoned players who take a break for a year or two need a lot of time to catch up on all the changes, let alone someone who has never encountered MOBAs before. 

Another serious issue newbies encounter is a huge amount of smurf accounts. For example, you finished the tutorial and played a few PvE games. You understand the basics and are ready to show your Garen skills versus other players. Unfortunately for you, the chances are that you will be facing an experienced LoL player who is leveling a new account under the guise of a beginner.

You just have to play the game

You have to be patient and just play a lot. There is really no other way around it. Take the time to learn the game and the Champions, though try not to lose your mind. There are plenty of resources online, such as guides and tips that could help you understand the game more quickly and efficiently.

via Riot Games

Another thing you can try is playing ARAMs. It is a great environment for learning the Champions, but less serious and time-consuming. Also, you are forced to play a random Champion, which could help you learn about more of them quicker.

If you decide it is not for you, maybe give Wild Rift a try, as the game is much better set up for beginners. It is a mobile version of League of Legends, with half as many Champions and a better tutorial and Champion learning systems.

Also, typing /muteall when you load in the game is highly recommended for your sanity.

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