Entering the Fray
Getting Started on Summoner's Rift
A lot goes into a successful battle on the Field of Justice. Here you'll learn about the basics of the game, familiarize yourself with the basic mechanics through the in-game tutorials, and take your first steps onto Summoner's Rift.
The League is filled with champions of every archetype, from devious masterminds to epic monsters and everything in between. Different champions suit different roles and strategies, so don't get discouraged if the first one you try doesn't mesh with your playstyle.
Controlling your champion
With a few caveats, champions use a traditional RTS control scheme.
- To move your champion, right click on the terrain where you'd like to go
- To attack an enemy, right click on your target
- To cast a spell left-click the associated icon or use the spell's hotkey (Q,W,E, or R by default), and then click on the target.
Controls can be customized through the Options menu.
There are three roads that connect your base to the enemy's. These roads are called lanes, and they'll serve as the means of engaging the enemy team. To win a game you'll have to push down your lane into the enemy base and destroy the nexus at the heart of their base.
Minions are AI-controlled soldiers that spawn at the nexus and march down each lane toward the enemy base, attacking enemies they encounter along the way. Scoring the killing blow on a minion earns valuable gold for your champion. Minions prefer to fight each other, but will attack your champion if they find him alone in lane. They'll also switch targets to focus on you if you attack a nearby allied champion. Don't underestimate the power of a big wave of minions, particularly early in the game!
Turrets are powerful defensive structures that defend each lane at even intervals, punishing enemies that come within range with deadly bolts of energy. Like minions, they prefer to attack targets other than you, unless you engage another champion while within range. A hostile turret will only target you if you're attacking an enemy champion or if you're the last target in range. Beware of picking a fight under an enemy turret.
Important structures known as inhibitors are located where each lane meets the base on both sides of the map. Destroying an inhibitor creates a powerful super minion each time a new minion wave spawns in that lane. Super minions are extremely durable, making them ideal for leading the charge on the enemy nexus. Inhibitors respawn after five minutes, so be sure to press your advantage during this time.
Destroying all three of an enemy's inhibitors will cause two super minions to spawn in each lane every time a new minion wave is created.
The NexusAt the heart of each base lies the nexus. Protected by two turrets, the nexus is the structure that periodically generates minion waves in each lane. Once a team has destroyed the enemy nexus, the game is over and that team is declared victorious.
ItemsIn a game of League of Legends, your champion earns gold by taking down enemy units and structures. Scoring the killing blow on a minion or champion, assisting in a champion kill, and acquiring certain runes or items are just a few ways you can generate additional income. You can use your gold to purchase powerful items from the shop near the summoner platform. Just click on the shop or the button next to your gold total to open the store.
- Items grant bonuses as soon as they're purchased; there is no need to equip items
- Different champions and play styles excel with different item builds, so your strategy will inform your purchases
- The most powerful items are made by combining smaller items, so don't hesitate to buy a component item
- Usable equipment such as potions, wards, and activatable items are used by clicking on the icon in your inventory or by hotkey 1 - 6
Between the lanes lies the jungle, an expanse filled with neutral monsters. These monsters won't attack the enemy base, but they can be defeated for additional gold and special temporary buffs. A player may take on the role of jungler and use these areas as his primary source of income. Junglers typically roam between the lanes, coming to the aid of allies in lane when needed.
Play the Tutorials
Before you decide to take on a live opponent, consider getting better acquainted with the game through the Tutorial and Battle Training. Each of these tutorials teaches the basics of League of Legends, from fundamentals like movement to more advanced topics such as ambushes and jungle buffs. Completing these tutorials will help you get ready to face human opponents.
Play Co-op vs. AI
After completing the tutorials, you can also join forces with other summoners in a 5-player match against computer-controlled bots. While the tutorials are guided by quests and suggested strategies, here you and your teammates will decide how to best engage the enemy champions, conquer map objectives, and push down the lanes to win the game.
Why Co-op vs. AI?
Co-op vs. AI is a great way to learn a new champion's abilities or test out a new strategy with your team. Unlike the tutorials, co-op allows you to interact with other summoners and tailor AI's difficulty to your skill level. Whether you play for one game or one hundred, it's a great place to meet other summoners.
How to start a Co-op vs. AI Game
Click the Play button in the upper-middle of PvP.net client. Select Co-op vs. AI game type from the list of options on the left. Choose Summoner's Rift and your preferred difficulty, and then either start a party of your friends or choose to allow matchmaking to automatically find teammates for you.
Beyond the bots
Beginner, Intermediate, and More
While nearly every champion in League of Legends has a bot counterpart, battling the AI is no substitute for a true PvP experience. Even the infamous Annie Bot won't adapt to your strategies the same way a real, human opponent would.
The next section details how you can meet friends online and play against human opponents. Whether queuing with a team or going solo, our matchmaking system is designed to pit you against summoners of similar skill. As your skills increase, so will the skills of your opponents. When you reach level 30, you'll even have the option to participate in Ranked play.
Play custom games with friends
Once you've tested your mettle against the AI, you may start craving some real PvP. Playing custom games with some of the summoners on your friends list can be a great way to test yourself against live opponents in a low-pressure setting.
Start a custom game
Click the Play button in the upper-middle of PvP.net client. Select the custom game type from the list of options on the left. Click Create, and then select Summoner's Rift and give your game a name. If you have enough players on your friends list to fill the lobby, feel free to set a password. If you need to fill up the game you can also add bots or leave the game open to other summoners interested in joining. Once you're finished, click Create Game to begin inviting your friends.
- Custom games with friends are a great way to start battling other players in a low-pressure environment
- You can password protect your custom games if you want to limit them to players who are already your friends
- If you need more players to fill up a game, you can add bots to either side
Entering the Fray
Whether you're arranging a custom game for your friends to join or letting matchmaking pair you against an equally-skilled team, League of Legends matches are full of memorable moments and clutch plays. Here you'll learn how to get started in each of the different game modes currently available.
Remember that matches are even better when you fight alongside your friends, so don't hesitate to invite them to party with you!
To enter the matchmaking queue, press the red Play button at the middle-top of the game client, and then select your preferred game type from the options that follow. After you've selected your map, you can either have the matchmaker find teammates for you, or choose to form a group by inviting other summoners.
Adding Friends to the Game
If you choose to play as a group, you can invite other summoners by selecting "I will invite my own teammates" under the Party heading. Once you've decided to form a group, a game lobby will open so you can select which of your friends you'd like to invite to play. When you've finished selecting your potential teammates, press Invite Players.