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Video Game / League of Legends

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Pictured L-R: Lux, Jinx, Yasuo, Blitzcrank.
Not pictured: Over 150 other playable champions.

Welcome to Summoner's Rift!

League of Legends is a free-to-play Multiplayer Online Battle Arena game and Spiritual Successor to the widely popular Warcraft III custom map, Defense of the Ancients, and claims to be the most played game in the world. Yes, even more than the behemoth World of Warcraft.

Like DotA, League of Legends gives you control of one Champion, who has unique attacks and abilities, and sends you out against enemy Mooks and Champions to earn experience points and gold. Your goal is to destroy the enemy base (the Nexus) by first eliminating the turrets that defend it, which usually requires a heap-load of Cannon Fodder Mooks to tank the turret blasts while the Champions whittle it down. There are also a number of secondary objectives scattered around the map which grant significant bonuses to whoever claims them.


The Framing Device originally revolved around the titular "League of Legends", a magical battle arena used to settle disputes between the competing factions living in the magical fantasy world of Runeterra. The lore has developed in a massive way since then, employing a Continuity Reboot that wrote out the League entirely in favour of focusing upon the living tales of individual characters and entire nations that populate Runeterra. The ongoing lore is now primarily communicated through Universe, an extensive encyclopedia website; as well as written stories, artwork, comics, animations, and special character interactions.

Unlike the Champions who start each match at Level 1, the Player Character Summoners are persistent and gain experience with every battle. Summoners can also directly improve a Champion's stats during gameplay by equipping "Runes", and bringing two Support Powers into battle.


League of Legends, like all MOBA games, stems from Defense of the Ancients, originally a Warcraft 3 custom map, which itself was based on Aeon of Strife, a Starcraft custom map. LoL currently competes with several other games that originate from DotA, including its own direct sequel, Dota 2. However, LoL has many distinct differences from DotA, most of which simplify the game to some extent. Riot Games pushed it heavily as a professional e-sport, and it has long since eclipsed the original DotA's popularity. Like we said: most played game in the world. After awhile, the Battle Royale shooter genre popularized by Fortnite dethroned it, but League certainly left their mark in the stages of gaming history.

The game has two playable modes, each between two opposing teams of up to five players:

  • Classic: The standard mode of play as described above. The map for this mode is Summoner's Rift, a 5v5 three-lane map in the same style of DotA's map.note 
  • ARAM: "All-Random, All-Mid", which was originally a fan-made House Rule of Classic Mode where players would agree to use random Champions, only employ the central lane and were not allowed to return to their base until death. This created a highly-aggressive game based more around direct combat than map control. It was later canonized into an official mode and given a unique map: the "Proving Grounds", later revised into "The Howling Abyss".note 

    Thirty seconds until tropes spawn!

On top of this, in November 2013, Riot started releasing "temporary game modes" that are only available for a limited time. Riot has a "Featured Game Mode" queue that opens at a somewhat sporadic schedule, with specific game modes being available for play on a rotational basis. These game modes include:

    Featured Game Modes 

Currently in Active Rotation:

  • One for All: A mode that operates exactly like Classic, except each team is made up of five copies of the same champion. Only three champions were permanently vetoed: Karthus (five of his ultimate ability hitting at once would be unbeatable), Syndra (so many orbs), and Teemo (so many mushrooms).
  • Ultra Rapid Fire, or U.R.F.: Announced on April Fools' Day 2014 as "the future of LoL", this mode grants a global buff to all players that allows them to spam abilities to a ridiculously overpowered degree. Hilarity Ensues. It also has an "ARURF" variant, which forces random champions in a manner similar to ARAM, and a retired "Snow Battle ARURF" variant, which combined a limited pool of champions in their holiday skins with supercharged versions of ARAM's Mark/Dash spell.
  • Nexus Blitz: A fast-paced mode on a separate map from Summoner's Rift and the Howling Abyss called the "Temple of Lily and Lotus", with two lanes, a jungle designed for two players, the ability to get "On Fire" from killstreaks, and minigames that grant random bonuses happening every few minutes. Notably intended to explicitly last 20 minutes or less: if a team hasn't won by 17:30, the Nexii get up and start attacking each other.
  • Ultimate Spellbook: The most recently developed (and currently unreleased) rotating mode, themed after the Ruination event. Everyone gets a special summoner spell that allows you to cast one of three randomly-selected ultimates from another Champion. Additionally, everyone's ultimates now scale with both ability power and attack damage, meaning that the ult you pick won't conflict with your item build.
  • Legend of the Poro King: A winter-exclusive 5v5 skirmish on the Howling Abyss where the usual Summoner spells are replaced by two poro-specific abilities: firstly, the ability to throw a companion poro at enemies (and to dash to an enemy afterward) and secondly, to dash to the side of the Poro King, whom you will summon once your team has landed 10 poro hits on enemy players. The Poro King is a giant poro who proceeds slowly down the map, healing your team and doing damage to your enemies (tanking turret blasts and thrown enemy poros too) until he is dispelled. Possibly retired.


  • Definitely Not Dominion: Known simply as Dominion in its original incarnation. A capture-and-hold game where players must fight over control of five "capture points" on the map. The Nexus is not attacked directly, but damaged over time depending on how many points are controlled. Champions start at Level 3 and gain gold and experience far more quickly than normal, leading to a more action-packed match. The dedicated map for this mode is called "The Crystal Scar". This was originally one of the three main game types alongside Classic and ARAM, but was discontinued after four years in February 2016 due to a lack of interest. Ironically, fan outcry about its removal eventually saw its inclusion in the Rotating Game Mode queue. Riot remastered the assets, did a few tweaks, and added it to the rotation. (It has yet to rotate back in after its debut.)
  • The Showdown: A 1v1 or 2v2 skirmish on a modified version of the Howling Abyss map. The winner is the first player/team to draw First Blood, destroy a Tower, or kill one hundred enemy minions. Oh, and whoever wins dances as Victory is declared and the whole bridge floods with happy Poros.
  • Hexakill: A 6v6 war that completely upends the standard meta of the game. While it started on Summoner's Rift, it eventually moved over to Twisted Treeline (where the smaller map geometry gave it an identity separate from that of Summoner's Rift). Retired with the Twisted Treeline map.
  • One for All Mirror Mode: A variation of "One for All" that pits ten of the same champion against each other on the Howling Abyss map. Unlike standard One for All, it never really took off.
  • Doom Bots of Doom: A Co-Op vs. AI mode which pits regular players against Purposely Overpowered bots. These "Doom Bots" not only have incredibly unfair versions of their regular abilities, but gain randomized bonus abilities taken from other Champions or made exclusively for this mode. A later remake turns this into a sort of survival mode, with Little Devil Teemo as the final boss.
    • Two other PvE modes (Star Guardian: Invasion and Odyssey: Extraction) pit the players against a predesigned set of mooks on custom maps, ending in a boss fight, with the former being limited to the first ten Champions with Star Guardian skins and the latter being limited to one of the five champions (besides Kayn) with Odyssey skins. "Odyssey: Extraction" notably gave players the ability to customize aspects of their champions' abilities within the mode, letting you do things like run Ziggs as a healer or Yasuo as a mage focused around his dash.
  • Ascension: A modified version of the Dominion map, where two teams of five must move through an even thicker fog of war to capture relics. At the center of the map is the boss, a stationary Xerath with a high level of health; whoever kills him Ascends themselves, becoming highly buffed until the enemy team manages to kill them. Points are awarded for champion kills and relics captured; first team to 200 wins.
  • Nemesis Draft: A variation on Summoner's Rift Draft Mode, where instead of picking your own champions, you pick the enemy team's. Cue a complete reversal of the usual draft tactics, as players try to ban out the perceived worst champions and give the enemy team the most awkward champions and comps they can come up with.
  • Black Market Brawlers: Originally added as a part of the Bilgewater: Burning Tides event. In this game mode, many different items from the "black market" are also available for sale, some with very dramatic effects. Additionally, you can spend Krakens, a currency unique to the game mode, on Brawlers, unique mercenary creatures that follow minions down a lane. Subsequent Krakens spent can upgrade your Brawlers to give them unique effects. After it ended, one of the unique items, the Dead Man's Plate, was added to regular gameplay to memorialize the event.
  • Nexus Siege: A time-attack competition where the Attacking team attempts to destroy the Nexus of the Defending team as quickly as possible. The two teams then switch sides, and whoever gets the best time wins. Both teams can buy special Siege Equipment to help their side, such as tower-destroying cannon placements for the Attackers and tower-buffing super-lasers for the Defenders.
  • Hunt of the Blood Moon: A deathmatch game mode where only very aggressive and squishy champions, mostly Assassins, are playable. The first team to reach 350 points wins, and points are gained by killing enemy champions, hunting enemy spirits in their jungle, or killing the Demon Heralds that spawn in the Baron and Dragon pits. If one champion gets three kills in a row without dying or returning to base, they gain Demon Brand, which turns them invisible and causes their next attack to deal true damage. It's a huge deathmatch where everyone is a glass cannon.
  • Dark Star: Singularity: An odd deathmatch mode where all players load in as Dark Star Thresh, on a ruined version of one of the Summoner's Rift bases set around a central black hole. Players have to yank and shove their enemies into the black hole while avoiding being knocked in themselves, with damage taken increasing the distance enemy abilities push or pull you. (Notably, you can only die by being knocked inside the black hole.)
  • OVERCHARGE: A PROJECT-themed deathmatch mode limited entirely to Marksman champions. Players try to kill each other while destroying bots to overcharge their team and picking up items that restore health or refresh their cooldowns.

On June 25th, 2019, Riot released another mode, Teamfight Tactics which became its own standalone title.

The Characters pages list every commercially-released champion, detailing tropes related to their backstory, appearance, and gameplay mechanics, and a few other characters to boot. The numerous memes spawned by the community can be found here. The numerous Shout Outs to other medias can be found here. For details on the professional teams and their members, see Professional Gaming under the MOBA folder. For the truly daring, the Drinking Game page can be viewed here.

The game has since formed the crux of an entire media franchise including several other games, comics, animated series, and music. It is also central to Players 2022, a mockumentary about an LCS team made with the cooperation of Riot Games.

Tropes have spawned!

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     Tropes A-B 
  • Aborted Arc: The entirety of the pre-retcon lore, aside from a few archetypal starting points for some champions, and even that's not a guarantee. In an extensive post, Riot said the old lore was extremely limiting and prevented them from truly exploring unique and interesting avenues for their characters. They weren't wrong, as the old lore was filled with Excuse Plots, excessive Fanservice, and other general nonsense. So, they started over. Clean slate. The lore since then has taken many by surprise.
  • Aerith and Bob: There are champions with names like "Annie", "Vladimir", and "Diana", as well as ones with more exotic names like "Rek'Sai", "Teemo", and "Thresh".
  • All Love Is Unrequited: Zoe has a crush on Ezreal, who is implied to have a crush on Lux, who is either uninterested or oblivious. Averted in Alternate Universe versions of Lux and Ezreal, as Star Guardian Ezreal is treated as an Implied Love Interest to Lux and in the Battle Academia universe, they seem to be dating.
  • All Your Base Are Belong to Us: The ultimate goal of each game is to destroy the enemy's Nexus at the end of their base, so unless one of them surrenders early, a base invasion will occur; whether it's yours or the enemy's will depend entirely on how everyone plays the game.
  • Alternate Universe: Quite a number of the alternate skins for champions play with this, with in-game skin descriptions and other promotional materials tying them together in similar thematic universes. More information can be found on the Groups and Skin Themes page, but some notable ones:
    • Academy: The champions live as students, teachers, and professors in high school. Taken further with the Riot-endorsed series of Academy Adventures fan comics, which shows exactly what happens when you have a school filled with super powerful beings who have much of their original personalities.
    • Arcade: The champions are video game characters... wait a minute...
    • Battlecast (or "The Evolution"): Viktor has realized his Glorious Evolution. In turn, he's created a number of machine monstrosities, based on several void champions, Xerath, and Skarner.
    • PROJECT: The champions are part of a Cyberpunk future, and turned into cyborgs meant for battle, and forced to often undergo torturous memory wipes to suppress their humanity and memories of their former lives. Master Yi in particular has suffered from this, but has flashes of his original memories. However, a resistance faction led by Ashe have broken away to avoid having their memories of their human selves taken away, and fight to free other PROJECT members from being used as mere weapons.
    • Pulsefire: Future setting where champions have access to time travel and other alternate universes. Ezereal has become a "time explorer", but is actually considered a criminal because of his habit of taking artifacts from their correct timelines, causing the butterfly effect. He is now chased after by this universe's Caitlyn as she tries to stop him and others who negatively affect the various time streams from their rightful course.
    • Rift Quest: A number of the champions re-imagined as characters in several Dungeons & Dragons Tabletop RPG parties.
    • Star Guardian: Champions living in a modern-day world, school students by day, and Magical Girl Warriors by night. Two parties exist: the first of Lux, Lulu, Janna, Jinx, and Poppy, and the second of Ahri, Miss Fortune, Soraka, Syndra, Neeko and Ezreal with Zoe, Rakan and Xayah being treated as the Big Bad.
    • Pentakill: Mordekaiser, Yorick, Karthus, Olaf, Sona, and Kayle as members of a Death Metal rock band. Defictionalized with Riot's in-house band Pentakill releasing an actual album, with songs named after various items, gameplay features, and lore pieces.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: Seemingly invoked by The Void and the Shadow Isles but subverted when you read up on their characters and lore. It's certainly the case for a majority of champions in those factions, but not all of them.
  • American Kirby Is Hardcore: Invoked with the Japanese voice actor reveal trailer of the Japanese dub cast of the game. Because of pop culture differences between Japan and the west, cuter champions (i.e. Annie, Lulu, Teemo, Jinx, Ashe, Nami, and Ziggs) and Japanese aesthetic ones (such as Master Yi and Yasuo) are highlighted more while "manly" champions (i.e. Darius, Draven, Graves, Rengar) and gritty action girls (Katarina, Morgana, Sivir, Shyvana) are highlighted in many western trailers for this game.
  • Amplifier Artifact:
    • Many champions have kits which don't really kick into gear until they reach a "core build", a fundamental combination of items that matches their stats and abilities. This creates a "power spike" when they reach that item which often allows their team to seize an advantage by leveraging their new power.
    • Season 11 introduced "Mythic Items" that are a localized version of this. All are powerful on their own, and they each come with a passive that gives them increased stats based on the other items a player builds, meaning they're imperative for every single champion in every single game, ideally to act as the first major completed item. The catch is that you can only have one Mythic item at a time, so players must choose early on what's the most complimentary one for each given champion against any given opponents.
  • An Adventurer Is You: In late 2013, Riot made an update to their champion classification to more accurately express their role in a team, expanding for specificity's sake in 2016. You can check out those classifications on the character page.
  • Animated Outtakes: In 2010, Riot released a couple outtake videos for the game's very first promotional cinematic, "Welcome to League of Legends". Highlights include Master Yi ogling Katarina's breasts instead of fighting her and receiving a Groin Attack from her as retribution, Cho'Gath coughing up a minion he ate, and Ryze distracting the jackal-headed Nasus with a tennis ball.
  • Animesque: A few champion designs and some champion splash arts have a noticeable Eastern influence — one big difference between this game and its nearest rival game Dota2 is that Dota 2 looks more like a Western RPG, whereas League looks more like a JRPG. League as a whole is still distinctly a western game, but it still likes to integrate a few anime references in many of its designs/quotes/storylines, as well as in several non-canon skins, most prominently the Super Galaxy and Star Guardian lines. The Spirit Blossom skin-line takes it even further, with various character skins resembling preexisting Anime characters.
  • Announcer Chatter: At the start of the game, when minions are spawned, whenever someone goes down, destruction of important buildings, and killing sprees. It helps that she sounds like she could be the Administrator's older, kinder sister, even if she does revel in bloodshed. Special events occasionally replace this voice, with the Burning Tides event having Gangplank serving this role.
  • Anti-Frustration Features:
    • A number of the more technical or esoteric aspects from the original Defense of the Ancients are gone, including, but are not limited to:
      • Making every champion's abilities and summoner spells mapped to the same accessible QWER/DF configuration rather than the unique configurations for every single hero that were spread across the keyboard.
      • The "Town Portal Scroll" was decomposed into a universal "recall" ability that can be used at any time to return to base, and the "Teleport" summoner spell functions like a free (but long-cooldown) TP Scroll.
      • Creep denial — in which you kill your own Minions which doesn't give you gold and experience but denies your enemy from doing the same — is completely removed.
      • Death no longer causes you to lose gold, and tower kills distribute gold to the entire team rather than just the player who last-hit it, reducing the likelihood of Unstable Equilibrium.
      • Aside from critical strike chance, almost all stat-based RNG mechanics have been completely phased out, and mechanics that do have a randomness element tend to be much more interactive beyond simple stats.
      • Stuns are far less prevalent, greatly reducing the tendency for a player to get "locked down" with several consecutive stun abilities.
    • You can choose your attack-move behavior to either target the enemy closest to where you clicked or the first enemy that steps into your attack range.
    • You can also have Smart Cast show your skill's targeting reticle. Pressing the key will display the reticle, and releasing it will cast the skill.
    • When a player disconnects, his or her champion will simply walk back to base (rather than stand still and wait for something to come kill them). You're still stuck with a lower max number of players, but it can prevent a cheap death by standing idle in front of an enemy turret. (DOTA 2 took notice of this and upped the ante by having an AI-controlled bot take control of the disconnected player).
    • The First Win of the Day bonus resets every 20 hours rather than the normally-expected 24 hours, giving you much more leeway in getting the bonus every day without having to worry about schedule slipping.
    • The in-game shop has an undo button to fully refund purchases within a limited window of time. This handily eliminates the age-old dilemma of buying the wrong item and having to choose between being stuck with the wrong item or losing valuable gold selling it back for less.
    • Season 4 introduced a new item system which implemented a few changes for convenience:
      • The trinket system was added that allowed players to pick up either gain free wards, scout out an area of the map from far away, or disable stealth. This, combined with the 3-per-person limit on wards, alleviated the all-too-common problem of the support player being the only one on the map placing any wards at all.
      • For support characters, players could choose one of three starter support items that increased gold income, carefully designed (mostly by causing the effects to stop working temporarily if they kill a minion, the usual method of gold income) to let supports gain a gold stream closer to their teammates, partially addressing a complaint that the role was less fun due to their inability to buy worthy item upgrades.
    • As of pre-season 6, player vision wards now automatically upgrade, since players often forget anyway. Also, all players receive the "Homeguard" enchantment at 20 minutes, rather than having to buy it.
    • Pre-season 11 introduced a major overhaul to the item store layout, allowing inexperienced players to better understand their build paths for any given scenario. Among the changes were updating major weapons to succinctly describe their function for any given champion (Liandry's Anguish for "Anti-Tank", Duskblade of Draktharr for "Multikill", Goredrinker to "Survive Burst", etc.), and making the "Recommended" tab update based on enemy compositions. It also implemented quick-buy sidebars for universally-desirable consumables and boots for convenience.
    • Wild Rift automatically inverts the view so that you're always playing as the "Blue team" (the base is to the left and bottom of the map).
  • Anti-Magic: Any champion with an ability that Silences enemies (incapable of using abilities, cancels currently channeling ones, etc.) can do this. No crowd control lasts for more than a couple of seconds, but casters are rendered nearly helpless for the duration, making it feel very long indeed. Naturally, the few specialized Mage Killer champions have this in their arsenal plus other abilities to capitalize on this vulnerable period.
  • Anti-Regeneration: The game has a semi-common status effect called "Grievous Wounds", which causes anyone afflicted by it to receive significantly reduced healing from any sources. A few champions have this innately as part of their moveset, but they're easier to come by in terms of specialized items (such as the Morellonomicon, the Chempunk Chainsword, and Mortal Reminder), which can cancel anywhere between 30% to 50% of their target's healing ability. If your enemy team has a lot of dedicated healers or built-in Life Drain, it's pretty much imperative.
  • Arch-Enemy: The League is host to several of pairs of champions who would love to see each other dead. See the various character pages for details.
  • Armor Is Useless: Can reach this state at times, depending on the balance of the game. During those times, Tanks and Fighters typically fall out of favor, and Controllers and Slayers (Often with strange item builds) typically end up taking their place.
  • Armor-Piercing Attack:
    • Armor/Magic Penetration stats affect how much a player's attacks can pierce through an enemy's Armor or Magic Resist, respectively, and Lethality is a stat that increases Armor Penetration based on the target's level (in practice based on how items are balanced, the significance in distinguishing Armor Pen and Lethality is that Armor Pen scales well against enemies building plenty of Armor, while Lethality stacks well towards chunking out enemies who don't). There's also "true damage", which cannot be mitigated by Armor or Magic Resist, and can only be combated through having more health.
    • A different, but still straight example comes in the form of the Serpent's Fang, an AD/lethality item that grants bonus damage against shields. Its base stats are intentionally meant to be somewhat middling and the item itself somewhat niche, but against enemy teams that rely on lots of shields, it's an effective kryptonite.
    • A much rarer damage type is what's considered "raw damage", found primarily in One-Hit Kill effects such as Urgot's Fear Beyond Death and Pyke's Death From Below ultimates, or even the enemy fountain lasers. Ignoring shields, healing, and resurrection states, if an enemy is hit by it, they will die.
  • Art Evolution:
    • As part of League's ever-evolving nature, its art style and fidelity began as a mostly amateur-quality, with splash arts being poses of in-game models, voiceovers being brief and limited, etc. As Riot's resources and talent continually increases, they've taken to greatly update assets they deem outdated in many different fields, from higher-quality splash arts, to entire champion relaunches that rebuild their art, model, effects, audio, and voices to modern standards. An extensive list of individual updates for each champion can be found on the wiki.
    • Wild Rift, in spite of being a mobile version of the game, was built from scratch using much better graphical technology and resources than what the PC game had up to 10 years prior, so many of the older champions have received enormously improved models, animations, splash arts, and other assets compared to their PC counterparts.
  • The Artifact: Before the great retconning, the League of Legends itself descended into this. It's one of the primary reasons why Riot went through with the retcon.
  • Artifact Title:
    • Double Subverted for the very title of the game, in that while the in-universe organization of the League of Legends has been retconned out, it could be considered that the game is still a league of actual legends, either famous in-universe characters, Folk Heroes given flesh for combat, or actual ethereal entities that wouldn't exist if the literal League had still existed.
    • "Ability power" might be confusing to new players, who might wonder why it's used synonymously with "magic damage" considering there are many abilities that scale off of physical attack damage, health, or other paradigms. That's because when the game first started out, all abilities were exclusively scaled to this one stat; physical damage was channeled entirely through basic attacks, with AD-scaling abilities being a later development.
  • Artificial Brilliance/Artificial Stupidity: The bots zig-zag between these two. The bots on Beginner are notoriously poor players, running into towers without minions and rarely going back for more health. This is however justified given how they still regularly beat new players. The Intermediate bots, on the other hand, are a whole order of magnitude more difficult, ganking weak champions and making much better use of their abilities — and yet they still make stupid decisions like chasing "weakened" champions all across the map while their lane stays wide-open.
  • Ascended Meme: As to be expected for a regularly-updating game by a development team that regularly interacts with the community, many. See the Memes page for more.
  • Athens and Sparta: Piltover and Zaun have this dynamic, with Piltover being the clean, shining beacon of achievement to Zaun's polluted, grungy atmosphere. The twist is that they are the same city and that Piltover has only been able to get so far by exploiting the working class in Zaun.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: It depends on the situation, but in a lot of cases, blindly attacking is a bad idea. "Pushing", or clearing minions as fast as possible to get closer to the enemy tower can leave one in a vulnerable position to get ganked as it's easier to kill someone that has to run all the way back to their tower. However, given adequate ward coverage and map awareness to protect against approaching enemies, pushing the lane can be a good thing as it makes it harder for the enemy to farm with their tower damaging creepsnote  and ensures that they can't leave their lane to help out elsewhere without losing the tower. It's otherwise more beneficial to keep the lane relatively even by only finishing off minions, or "last-hitting", since this maximizes gold gained versus distance pushed. Learning where and when to push the lane is an integral part of coming to understand the game and improving.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Between Jarvan IV, Garen, Swain, Darius, Ashe, Tryndamere, and Sejuani, the game has quite a few badass royals and generals.
  • Award-Bait Song: "Legends Never Die", featuring rock band Against the Current. You can bet that it earned a nomination for "Best Original Song" at the 16th Annual Game Audio Network Guild Awards.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: A number of things. Snowballing items that require you to get kills, cheesy champion strategies that rely on bewilderment and brute force, as well as a certain number of champions depending on where you play them.
  • Back from the Dead:
    • Everyone respawns after death for some time. As it likely gave your enemies time and extra gold over you, it will eventually get to a point where a dead team's buildings and base should logically be razed by the other side before they can respawn. The time it takes to respawn slowly progresses as the game increases. There's also the item Guardian Angel, which gives you a second chance by reviving you after a short stasis time with a little less than half of your health.
    • A number of champions invoke this as well, either in game or in lore. See the character page for details.
  • Badass Adorable: Yordles in general, as well as a number of other absolutely cute champions.
  • Bait-and-Switch Lesbians: Former lore writer Runaan wrote a Twitter post where she accused Riot of queerbaiting with Graves and Twisted Fate after the Double Double Cross cinematic. Within the post, she explained she had been trying to write the pair as married for years and faced open hostility about it from her higher-ups, only for Riot to claim the Homoerotic Subtext between the pair was intentional after the fandom responded positively to it, suggesting that teasing the pair was okay but actually having the two be married was unacceptable.
  • Battle Couple: A few champions are in romantic relationships with each other and fight alongside each other in the lore. They can also be made to fight against each other on the Rift.
  • Battle Cry: Lux, Jarvan IV, and Garen all shout DEMACIA! This proceeded to be parodied, many times, by other champions.
  • Better to Die than Be Killed:
    • Because being killed by enemy towers or minions without the aid of enemy champions does not reward their team with gold, some players who have pushed too far down a lane and see a large gank approaching will "deny themselves" by intentionally rushing towards the enemy nexus through multiple towers, hoping they will die to towers before the enemy team can reach them and thus avoid providing the enemy team with valuable gold and experience.
    • This tactic is surprisingly common in ARAM mode, where you'll often find players on long kill-streaks without dying diving into towers for the same principle as above, but also to purchase items, as in ARAM there is no recalling or returning to the shop until you die.
  • BFS: Several champions wield swords so enormous that the non-BF swords are practically the exception. In terms of items, many attack damage-based items are represented as swords, including a literal basic-tier item called B.F. Sword. More elaborate ones include Infinity Edge (a giant, golden sword for critical strike and damage), Bloodthirster (a jagged, blood-drinking sword for lifesteal), and Chempunk Chainsword (a chainsaw fusion for anti-heal).
  • Bizarre Sexual Dimorphism: Mild case with the Yordles. From the champions we're shown, female Yordles are always blue-furred with white hair (Tristana, Poppy), while male Yordles vary from having tan fur (Corki), tan fur and blonde hair (Heimerdinger), to looking like anthropomorphic hamsters (Kennen, Teemo, Rumble). This is mostly to pin on them originally being two races (Meglings and Yordles) that were Retconned into one, and later designs tend to downplay this trope.
  • Bloodless Carnage:
    • Despite all the shooting, smashing, stabbing, and slicing, there's no visible injuries or blood spilled the vast majority of the time. The exception is a few champions (particularly Noxian ones) whose attacks and/or abilities will make small spurts of blood show up on their targets, but not nearly as much as inflicting that kind of injury would cause.
    • Constantly zig-zagged in the cinematic videos— played straight in "A Twist of Fate", where even as where Garen rams his sword through Tryndamere's stomach and out his back, there's nothing more than a (small) smear of blood on the blade. Completely averted to startling levels in "A New Dawn" where Leona bleeds all over the place when Darius drives his axe into her body, Draven gets ripped to shreds by Rengar, and Graves' stomach is soaked in blood after a hit from Nautilus' massive anchor apparently snaps his spine. Then Played Straight again in future cinematics, including Kled's reveal video, which takes place in the middle of a violent battle, and while a tooth and saliva can be seen flying out of a poor sap's mouth, not a single speck of blood can be seen.
  • Bribing Your Way to Victory: Despite there being plenty of things to spend money on, very much Averted. While it's certainly faster to gain the unlockable champions by forking over cash, you can also gain them via "Blue Essence", which is awarded along with EXP after leveling up after certain games. While there are things you can only buy with money, they are either 1) purely cosmetic skins for your champions, or 2) "Boosts" which double your EXP gain for a set period of time. Ten champions, rotated weekly, are free to play at any time. It's perfectly viable to do some playtesting and then purchase only the ones you like.
  • Broad Strokes: The Ruined King saga has been explained in many different mediums, but they significantly differ in many ways, so determining what is canon can be a little rough, to a point where Riot accepts all versions — divergent as they are — as equally acceptable. The overall trajectory is the same (Viego strikes across Runeterra, Senna and Lucian recruit Sentinels from every region to fight him), but some versions change or omit certain details:
  • Buxom Is Better: Early on in the game's life, this was present for a lot of female champions. It was repeatedly explained that being subtler used to not work for the game engine, as long, elegant hair and massive breasts made it easy to distinguish a male character from female, and attempts from this era to be more modest (such as Riven or Quinn) proved them to be correct. Nowadays, they have much better graphics and technology available, so they don't need to rely on the tactic anymore with newer female champions like Jinx, Kalista, and Taliyah.

     Tropes C-D 
  • Can't Catch Up: True to being a MOBA, players can end up behind after getting killed a number of times. The vicious cycle is that the more kills that you give to an opponent, the more gold and EXP they get, so the next kill is easier, etc.
  • Cast of Snowflakes: In addition to each champion having a very different physical appearance, they each perform a very unique role in team compositions, at least in theory.
  • Chain Lethality Enabler: Several characters have mechanics in their kits which make it easier to follow up a kill with another kill, most commonly by refreshing cooldowns. Darius, Katarina, Master Yi, and Pyke are the most notable examples, with entire kits built around chaining kills.
  • Chain Lightning:
    • Luden's Tempest (and its predecessor, Luden's Echo) deals a burst of this through using abilities every few seconds, damaging your target as well as a few nearby enemies from magical energy.
    • The now-removed Statikk Shiv item caused lightning to shoot out from the target of your next basic attack, chaining onto nearby enemies, making it very effective for clearing waves of minions. This effect has since been moved to the Hextech Dragon Soul.
  • Changing Gameplay Priorities: When you first start playing, the focus is very heavily on offense, causing the whole game to be a blindingly fast damage contest. This makes "pub stomper" champions like Lee Sin and Master Yi ungodly powerful, and heavily snowballing champions like Katarina and Akali can be very hard to stop. As players learn more about how items work and how to use crowd control, however, the game becomes much more about solid defenses, teamwork and utility. Suddenly champions with highly variable kits are more important than champions who simply do a bucket of damage.
  • Character Roster Global Warming: The game has steadily experienced a degree of this over the course of its 10+ year development. While tank champions are still being made and the metagame periodically dips in favor of tanky play, Riot's attitude towards balance and overall game design has increasingly shifted away from passive defense and more towards dealing and undoing damage. The primary focus has to do with how tanks inherently slow down games, and metas where they're the most viable tend to reward passive play and thus become far more of a drag, and further complications come in the form of "bruiser" champions; bulky, but mobile and painful initiators that often make the point of a more reactive, defensive-oriented tank redundant (at least for when they're functioning as intended). Riot determined that these two distinct forms of Mighty Glacier can't functionally coexist on equal ground, and thus more and more, modern tanks lean into dealing damage or crowd control as a means of expressing value. It's quite telling that since 2018, there's at least one damage-dealing "juggernaut" champion being developed for the game each year, but the defense-oriented "warden" champion category was left barren between 2017 to 2022 (and even then, K'Sante's specialty is his ability to take on a more aggressive, skirmisher-like playstyle).
  • Cleavage Window: Just about every female champion has this in some capacity with an alternate skin, even the ones who have more modest default designs, such as Lux, Caitlyn, Vi, or Leona. Whoever invented the pushup bra in Runeterra must be doing very well for themselves.
  • Close-Range Combatant: Any melee champion, really. Despite their power being roughly the same to ranged champions that act as carries, being in close-range combat for them is often a very pressuring choice; they either move in to kill for sure, or they move in to eat a healthy enemy team's crowd control and die before they can even touch anything.
  • Colorblind Mode: There's a colorblind mode intended for players with deuteranopia which changes allied health bars from green to blue, makes certain red effects yellow and green effects blue, and changes particle colors slightly.
  • Combat by Champion: The original idea behind the game and the lore. Since the retcon, the game we play is non-canon fun, and this trope hasn't been invoked in it since.
  • Combos: The caster-type champions. In comparison to the "auto-attackers" who are either ranged carries and/or the Close-Range Combatant of Death of a Thousand Cuts, these champions rely mainly on their abilities to output their damage and utility, so with them, they're very focused on comboing their spells after one another, and focus much more on building raw attack damage/ability power stats, cooldown reduction (one of their most important stats needed) and some defensive bypasses to make sure their abilities can still do enough or more damage if their oppositions get tanky.
  • Comeback Mechanic: Shutting down an enemy champion with three or more kills nets the killer(s) an extra gold bounty and dying several times in a row without getting kills or assists keeps lowering the gold the enemy gets. Both of these, though somewhat small as benefits, help losing teams out and may prevent the Unstable Equilibrium from irrevocably favoring the winning side. As of Season 12, these bounties extend to objectives like towers and the Elemental Drakes.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: CPU Champions receive significant bonus gold above and beyond the kills and the minion farm they have, so even when far behind in the game, they can often match players item-wise. They also have reduced death timers and some other minor perks. Of course, all of this doesn't prevent humans from effortlessly curbstomping them; this is a compensation for the AI's deficiencies. Some of the minor perks include:
    • Complete map awareness, with the most blatant example being them hitting the player inside a brush with targeted abilities, despite having nothing in said brush that would reveal what's inside. They can also do this within a Fog of war area, launching a skill shot that they would, logically, have no reason to know a champion was there to be aimed at. Strangely, only some bots (Lux and Zilean especially) do this regularly and others (Ashe, Ezreal, Karthus) only with certain skills, making it inconsistent but frustrating.
    • Flawless coordination during team fights. Bots rarely, if ever, waste their hard CC abilities by blowing them all on their primary target, instead managing to keep the hapless target locked down for quite a while. Bots will also always clutch heal their teammates or otherwise prevent you from killing them far better than any team of players could be expected to do.
    • Inhuman reaction time. Expect most bots to practically pull off the FPS-equivalent of a 180 degree no-scope when it comes to skill-shots the instant you're spotted.
    • The computer players also know that you're targeting them the very instant that you click on them, which makes for some infuriating lane dancing in the early game. They can also flawlessly dodge any skill shot as long as it's possible to dodge it; if you hit a bot with a long-ranged skill shot it's because it let you hit it (although since bot AI doesn't go any higher than "Intermediate" they will let you hit them quite often).
  • Conlang: While not the most extensively developed, the Vastaya have several, all unrelated to typical human languages. Xayah and Rakan of the Lhotan tribe occasionally speak in a dialect called "Baraashi" with its own set of grammatical rules, though it doesn't have a ton of vocabulary as of now.
  • Conspicuously Selective Perception: A game mechanic.
    • Minions in the lanes will attack enemy champions if said enemy champion(s) attacks one of their allied champions. But only if they attack, as in by the method of "autoattacking". So, using only the abilities of the champion that one is playing as that does not utilize their autoattack allows a player to damage the enemy champions while their allied minions won't care at all. Avoid autoattacking the enemy champion if there are many minions nearby, and make sure the times you do autoattack an enemy champion have a superior payoff from the damage you'll take from those minions.
    • The towers do the same. In fact, they will conspicuously avoid enemy champions, picking off the minions first - until you target or do any damage to an enemy champion. Get careless with abilities like lasting poisons (Teemo, Twitch, or Singed) or multi-hit items and abilities (Ravenous Hydra, Ruunan's Hurricane, Cho'Gath's spikes), and you can suddenly find yourself coming under heavy assault with no idea how it happened.
  • Cooldown Manipulation: "Ability haste" is a character stat that reduces the amount of time for skills to refresh, with the given amount representing an increase of speed to burn a cooldown withnote . Various champions also have additional cooldown mechanics tied into their skills, oftentimes assassins refreshing an ability on a kill.
  • Cool Guns: Firearms of all kinds exist across many champions, as well as many items, including the Rapidfire Cannon (resembling what looks like a revolver with a Gatling gun barrel) and The Collector (a fancy Hand Cannon that instantly executes enemies under a health threshold).
  • Cool Helmet: Several items are represented as helms or helmets, usually to do with magical stats and defense.
  • Crippling Overspecialization:
    • Stacking one stat in this game will generally just make you extremely vulnerable or easily countered. Only a very few amount of champions have a gameplay style that encourages getting only one stat until you might as well upgrade to other items that give more in addition to them.
    • It's possible to force the enemy team to overspecialize. Pick an assassin or nuker and have a good early game to the point where the enemy is forced to buy resistance items specifically to counter you. While this leaves you fairly useless, the entire enemy team is now hundreds of gold behind or you could single out the one person that didn't buy resistances yet.
  • Critical Existence Failure: You can pretty much do the same things at low health as you can at max health. Zigzagged with a few champions who get 'tired' animations when at low health or when slowed. It looks like they're struggling, but it doesn't affect the performance unless it's an actual gameplay mechanic.
  • Critical Hit:
    • Random critical strikes are a technically universal mechanic, where all basic attacks and some abilities are able to randomly deal 175% of their intended damage by default, most prominently found on marksmen and attack damage carries heavily reliant on basic attacks. Critical strike chance is one of the few definitively RNG-based stat mechanics in the game, but even then, its randomness is dynamic and constantly shifts to at least be accurate — the longer a champion goes without getting a crit, the higher the chance of getting a crit, ensuring that a player with 30% crit chance gets roughly 30 crits among 100 basic attacks.
    • Guinsoo's Rageblade (as of its 2021 edition) fudges this around. In addition to other stat-based goodies, its primary effect (also present in the component item Rageknife) is that once purchased, the random-chance crit mechanic is entirely replaced by giving flat on-hit bonus damage based on crit chance, effectively an option to remove potential inconsistencies thanks to RNG to those who persistently rely on basic attacks and other on-hit effects.
  • Critical Hit Class: In theory, you can build any of the champions this way. In practice however, it's not always the smartest thing to do, since abilities don't usually have the possibility to score a critical strike like autoattacks do (Although some do). Marksman characters, though, revolve around Critical Hits, since their safety at range and allies defending them typically means they can rack up multiple critical strikes from a safe distance. Several champions also have modifiers that change the behavior of what their crits do, such as Ashe (whose crits slow enemies rather than deal bonus damage), or are slanted to scale in different ways, such as Yasuo and Yone (whose crit chance is multiplied and grants bonus damage when past the 100% crit chance cap).
  • Crutch Character vs. Magikarp Power: Most champions can be classified in terms of where they fall on the bully-carry spectrum. Those on the "bully" side are very strong on early game but become useless coming late game, and those on the "carry" side are the opposite: very weak on early game, but after enough gold grinding and the chance to nail some kills they become unstoppable powerhouses. Competent bully players will capitalize on their early game strength to prevent the enemy laner from becoming strong and outscaling them, whereas competent carry players will play defensively, hold out against the enemy champion, and try their best to grind the gold required to scale into late game.
  • Damn You, Muscle Memory!:
    • If you happen to be a purveyor of multiple MOBA games, it can be frustrating to instinctively hit "D" or "F" to get out of a bad situation only to realize that, no, you do NOT have Flash at your disposal. Similarly, getting used to certain configurations for item hotkeys (especially with the addition of Trinkets) can lead to screw-ups like hitting "4" to place a ward and accidentally using your Blink Dagger prematurely.
    • French players also have to consciously remember when discussing with English-speaking players that their keyboard mapping turns QWER into AZER and the attack-move key from A to Q. Russians also have to remember QWERDF corresponds to JCUKBA.
    • Wild Rift adds new active abilities to replace passive-only ones. Vayne, Vi, and Twisted Fate players can now press their second or third abilities to gain temporary bonus attack speed. The challenge of adjusting from PC to mobile interfaces is one thing, but it's another when you've known and played these characters for about a decade and you can't stop forgetting to activate a skill that wasn't there before.
    • Those jumping from Mobile Legends: Bang Bang to Wild Rift might be baffled on how the purchase interface is on the left corner of the screen, how wards exist to dispel fog of war, how purchase of gear must be done at the base, and how some of the hero abilities have to be manually aimed.
  • Darker and Edgier: The lore, and game as a whole, became this as it grew and matured. Originally, League was just a fun game with campy characters, pop culture references, and enough Fanservice to bleed the nose of the Pope. When Riot decided to start over with the lore and make a clean slate, things changed. Blatant Fanservice, while still continues in fun skins, was toned down in base champion appearances. Pop culture references became limited to in-game jokes, and newer champions started acting in much more serious and complex ways. Compare older champions who haven't been updated yet to one released or updated since the retcon, and the divide is really noticeable.
  • Death Is Cheap:
  • Death Is Gray: When the player dies, their entire screen goes grayscale, save for the red number ticking down to their respawn. Color only returns once they come back to life.
  • Death of a Thousand Cuts: The Skirmisher and Diver subclasses are notable for this. These champions are mainly considered "auto-attackers", and output their Death of a Thousand Cuts through mainly building tons of attack speed items, with critical chance, raw damage, bonus stat effects like cooldown reduction and movement speed being a bonus (along with their very useful spells that aren't as combo-oriented as most generic caster-type champions). These champions arguably are a bit different from most ranged attack-damage-carries due to them needing to close the gap to hack away at you somehow, but their build paths are a bit more varied as they can also build tanky if needed or all damage they feel like it and are doing well because of it. But naturally, being close up without enough items to sustain said damage output carries some risk compared to the ranged carries.
  • Death or Glory Attack:
    • Knockback abilities tend to work like this. Successful uses put the enemy in places they really don't want to be in. Failed uses can save the enemy or possibly even makes it easier for them to kill your allies.
    • Terrain-formation abilities do this too. You can block off your enemies from escaping... or do the same to your own allies. There is simply the possibility you use just waste them unlike knockback abilities though.
    • Not specifically an attack, but most gambits for a jungler to steal Dragon or Baron Nashor (the Giant Mook and King Mook objectives, respectively) with Smite fall under this. If the enemy team is trying to take the objective in large numbers, this will almost certainly be death for the instigator (since most abilities that might be used to escape are used to get close in the first place). If the gambit succeeds though, it's more than worth it since the enemy team will obtain 450 gold (Split across the team) for one kill while the player's team will get the bonuses for slaying Dragon or the Baron.
    • Tower-diving, especially when it's early on the game and very risky. If it can be pulled off, the diver gets a kill and demoralizes the enemy by showing that they can just walk into their safe zone and finish them off. If anything goes wrong (and indeed there are many things that can go wrong, including outside intervention), it's likely that the diver dies embarrassingly and feeds their opponent a free kill.
  • Decoy Getaway: A number of champions can deploy a clone/dummy to help them escape. Since some enemies are savvy enough to tell which is a fake and which is the real one, players may have to get a little creative. This is called "juking", and it is a skill that people using these champions are supposed to know.
  • Defeat Equals Explosion: Every game ends with the enemy Nexus blowing up, even in the game mode Dominion where players can't directly attack the enemy Nexus.
  • Deflector Shields: Numerous champions have these. Apart from those, several items offer different variants of shields. Locket of the Iron Solari shields you and nearby allies from damage, Banshee's Veil and Edge of Night entirely block a single spell, and Zhonya's Hourglass places you in an invulnerable stasis for a few precious seconds.
  • Defog of War: Wards, which are imperative to know the positioning of your enemies to plan out your strategies and execute them with full confidence. Some champion abilities can temporarily get vision of a particular area by using pets (such as Maokai or Orianna) or special abilities (such as Ashe) to act as sentries.
  • Difficult, but Awesome:
    • The game itself, as expected from a MOBA, even a comparatively mechanically toned-down MOBA, is complex to play due to the sheer number of mechanical and decision-making skills required to do well, especially in higher levels of gameplay, as well as having to keep a constant eye on the constantly-shifting Metagame that will inevitably affect all those mechanical/decision-making skills every few weeks.
    • Many individual champions have comparatively higher demands for mechanical/decision-making skills than others, and typically they end up being more valuable in comparison to simpler, but usually less diverse champions, though exceptions exist. Check out the individual champion pages for specific details on how they differ.
    • Out of all the roles of any given team, the jungle has a reputation of being the most macro-intensive and abstract — it's a highly fluid domain where even more than lane roles, the goals and priorities are constantly in flux and motivated by everything from champion picks to map movements (as well as much broader meta changes, as the domain has infamously been known to be subject to reworks and overhauls every other year due to being so hard to balance), and as such there's an enormous skill ceiling that only gets more complicated the further in rank you go up. However, the sheer power a good jungler contributes can't be overstated: one successful lane gank on the right enemy, one objective taken at the right time, even a few vision wards placed in the right spots can make all the difference for the team, and is considered one of the most vital roles in achieving victory.
    • Mejai's Soulstealer is one of the most difficult to use items in the game, but managing to get ahead with it can be devastating. Its main passive is that every kill or assist adds a few stacks of Glory, which increases the AP of the item by a significant amount per stack. At max stacks and with a Rabbadons Deathcap, Mejai's gives the player a whopping 371 AP in addition to whatever AP they current have, allowing them to punch a hole through anything that moves, even cutting tanks down to size. However, after a single kill, 10 stacks of Glory are lost, which means the scaling power you got is cut in half, if not outright dropped. This incentivizes getting a huge kill streak and increases the penalty for dropping it, but as any player can tell you, getting max stacks of Mejai's is borderline euphoric and allows you to One-Hit Kill just about anyone that isn't a tank.
  • Diminishing Returns for Balance:
    • Why it's a bad idea to stack too many of any role on a single 5 man team. Too many carries results in less gold and EXP for all of them and a squishy team, while an overly-tanky team cannot dish out damage fast enough, etc. Like any unconventional strategy, it can still work, it will just probably be harder.
    • Armor and Magic Resistance plays with this. After a certain point the percentage of protection both offer to Attack and Magic Damage, respectively, will increase more and more slowly, though this slow in increase is misleading: effective protection still increases at a linear rate. The rule of thumb is, the effective HP you would gain from armor/resistance always increases at the same rate: having 100 armor is like doubling your HP to physical attacks and 200 is like tripling it.
  • Disability Immunity: Averted. All status effects are all-encompassing with all champions, meaning that Lee Sin can be Blinded, Sona can be Silenced, Malphite can be Petrified, etc. despite the lack of sense that it makes in-universe.
  • Disaster Dominoes: Perhaps not the most unforgiving game in the MOBA genre, but even small mistakes in the beginning can set off a chain reaction. For instance, say the middle lane champion on your team doesn't ward and gets ganked a couple times. His opponent now has a gold and experience advantage and is buying items faster than him now and become more powerful. Now he's forced to stay under his tower, so the enemy is free to roam around and gank other lanes. Soon enough bot lane is fed too, your towers go down, the enemy team gains map control and freely pillages your jungle... it can snowball out of hand pretty fast.
  • Discontinuity Nod:
    • One of Pulsefire Ezreal's lines post-rework has him see the Tribunal from the old League lore and react with horror.
    • Sejuani's story Dead of Winter has Olaf refuse to speak of where he was or what he'd been doing during the maligned Rise of the Sentinels event to Sejuani, saying the whole thing was best kept in the past.
  • Drop-In-Drop-Out Multiplayer: No. If you leave during a game, even for a few minutes to take a bathroom break, you will cripple your team by being underleveled at best and singlehandedly turn the tide of battle in favor of your enemies at worst. If you're a busy person, live with your family or have friends who can drop in at any time, please wait until midnight when nobody will bother you and the internet is all yours. If you're gone long enough, you could end up reported for being a "leaver", which results in the banhammer if it happens enough.
  • Drop the Hammer: A number of champions wield variants on the classic hammer or mace of all different shapes and sizes. Certain items are also hammers, such as the wooden Phage and metal Caufield's Warhammer.
  • Dynamic Entry: Any champion with a dash or a blink really, where some might be more dramatic than others. In terms of universally-applicable methods, Flash is as powerful for initiation as escapes, and there are a few items that provide a quick dash and other goodies such as Galeforce, Prowler's Claw, and Hextech Rocketbelt.

     Tropes E-F 
  • Early-Bird Cameo: The remade (current) Baron Nashor made his first appearance in the A Twist of Fate cinematic, over a year and a half before he finally made it into the game in the Summoner's Rift update. Compare before and after.
  • Early-Installment Weirdness: League Of Legends had pretty fortuitous beginnings as the debut title to a nascent game studio with a skeleton crew seeking to make its own standalone successor to Defense of the Ancients. Even as the game itself is a Perpetual Beta with constant additions, improvements, and experimentation on its own, the earliest builds of League — namely the closed beta — were so experimental and volatile that that they're near-unrecognizable when put next to any "modern" incarnation of the game. Just some examples from the era before the game's proper launch in October 2009:
    • Cosmetically, Riot's technology resources were nowhere near as robust as what they achieved years later, so it was largely filled with heavily polygonal models, amateur artwork drawn on the cheap (mostly early skins were just recolors and splash arts were just renders of the in-game models), and voiceovers minimal.
    • In terms of individual play, champions were a lot less mechanically nuanced than what we see nowadays, largely consisting of high-damage burst mages, high-damage melee fighters, or Soraka (a high resource-dispensing support). Skillshots and mobility was far less common, with a vast majority of champions having point-and-click abilities and static movement, and the end result was that champions had far more innate power as micro was nowhere near as dynamic. Scaling was also strange as all damage abilities — even for fighters who otherwise prioritize attack damage from auto-attacks — scaled directly from the "ability power" stat (hence where that name comes from).
    • Several universal abilities were far more limited. Before summoner spells were properly introduced, Flash was an ability exclusive to upgraded boots called Yordle Stompers or even a "Blink Dagger", Teleport was initially manifest as a consumable item (at certain points called a "Scroll of Teleportation"), and even the ability to recall back to base was relegated to a consumable item called the "Blue Pill".
  • Elemental Fusion: Lux's Elementalist skin has her start off with her normal light powers, then she can later upgrade to Fire, Water, Air, or Nature. From there, you can combine with one other element to form a new one: Air + Fire = Storm, Air + Water = Ice, Fire + Nature = Magma, Nature + Water = Mystic, and Fire + Water or Air + Nature = Dark.
  • Elemental Powers: Every range of the spectrum — Fire, Water, Air, Earth, Darkness, Light, and more — is represented through the many, many champions. The Ultimate Elementalist Lux is all about shifting through the 10 different forms of these.
  • Elemental Rock-Paper-Scissors: Completely averted. Instead players need to take advantage of whether their targets are focusing on physical or magic resistance. The actual elements of the magic don't hold a candle to the combat, or even really determine the magic's mechanics.
  • Elite Mook: Super Minions can be summoned by destroying an enemy inhibitor, causing them to spawn in their respective lane for a while. The inhibitors are near a base's nexus, so their destruction usually means the game is going to wrap up in short order.
  • Empowered Badass Normal: Many champions were perfectly competent fighters/adventurers/leaders in their own right before receiving some "upgrade" that made them legendary.
  • Enemy Eats Your Lunch: "Buff theft," where you strike at an enemy while they're killing the neutral creeps that give the Blue and Red buffs, thus either killing or chasing them away and letting you steal their buff-carrying creep kills. Can also happen with the dragon, the Rift Herald and Baron Nashor, appropriately called "dragon/herald/Baron theft."
  • Evolving Attack: Beyond universally applicable levelling-up and a few champion-specific conditional traits (such as Kayle gaining new auto-attack behaviors from leveling up, or Kai'sa gaining ability upgrades on reaching certain stat thresholds), the game has had a history of items to play into this, usually in the form of items that start off weak and wildly increase in power over time.
    • Tear of the Goddess is a mana item which has gone through a few iterations in behavior, but is usually intended for spammy casters, granting mana up to a cap, and can be built into either the AP-based Archangel's Staff, the AD-based Manamune, or the tank-based Winter's Approach. Once it reaches its cap, its respective item upgrades into a more powerful Seraph's Embrace, Muramana, or Fimbulwinter.
    • Mejai's Soulstealer is an AP item which grants very paltry stats on its own, but gains stacks of AP for each kill and assist its user obtains. However, you lose quite a lot of stacks should you die while using it, making it an exceedingly risky pick for only the most confident of players.
    • The Rod of Ages is a mage item that passively grants AP, health, and mana each minute for up to 10 minutes. As a Mythic item, it's already designed to be prioritized as an early buy, so the automatic scaling grants even more substantial power spikes just by existing in your inventory.
    • Junglers have seen plenty of different "power-farming" items throughout the years, sacrificing early ganks and direct pressure over constantly fighting neutral objectives until they unlock into something powerful, namely Wriggle's Lantern (and its upgraded form, Feral Flare) and the Devourer Enchantment (and its upgraded Sated Devourer). This path has largely been abandoned by Riot as not only does this tend to be a pain to balance, it was also actively encouraging junglers to not work with their team.
  • Excuse Plot: Before the retconning, the lore was this; the League of Legends was an actual, arena based vessel for war in the lore, where nations would battle there to settle disputes instead of raging war on the world proper, which the gameplay was meant to represent. Eventually was retconned away because Riot felt it was too constricting and didn't allow the characters room to develop. Since then, the lore has gotten considerably less "excuse" driven and much more serious. The game is now "for fun" "what if" scenarios where we can just play with the champions like toys.
  • Failed a Spot Check: An extremely common mistake is to not watch the mini-map and fail to notice things like an incoming gank from the enemy team until said ganker is literally right in front of the player. If it's bad enough, a player might not even notice the enemy champion when it's very conspicuously within his field of vision and only realize there's something wrong when someone is within smacking distance of them. This can also happen if a team is so focused on an objective that they don't notice that an enemy is attempting Hit-and-Run Tactics elsewhere on the map until the announcer brings the destroyed tower/captured point to everyone's attention.
  • Fake Band:
    • The metal band Pentakill, consisting of champions Mordekaiser, Karthus, Sona, Olaf, Yorick, and Kayle. Originally just a fun non-canon skin line, Riot defictionalized their music, and have currently released two hugely collaborative albums ("Smite and Ignite" and "Grasp of the Undying") under their name.invoked
    • 2018 introduced K/DA (based on Kill/Death/Assist ratio), a skin line for a K-Pop idol-inspired Girl Group (taking after stylish and edgy groups like 2NE1 and BLACKPINK), originally featuring Ahri (her second Idol Singer skin), Akali, Evelynn and Kai'Sa. It was defictionalized much sooner, premiering their single "POP/STARS" on the same date of the skinline's release, coinciding with the finals of Worlds 2018. The group made a resurgence in 2020, with a second line of skins for them, a new member (Seraphine, who's actually an Idol Singer in her canon Runeterra lore as well) and several new songs and music videos as part of the release of their first EP, "All Out".invoked
    • Pulled off once again in 2019, this time with True Damage, a modern pop/hip-hop-styled Dream Team by K/DA's Akali alongside Senna, Ekko, Qiyana, and Yasuo. Like K/DA, True Damage made its debut at Worlds with their track GIANTS".
  • Fake Longevity: The average IP cost for new champions has gotten rather high. Where some champions may cost 450 or 1350 IP, the rest that have been released now cost around 6300 (or 7800 for the first week of release!). Riot's official explanation is that they feel the newer champions have been designed with different mechanics and playstyle reflected by their higher prices, though a number of players think they're just trying to encourage buying the champions with real money or are attempting to make use of this trope. They've implemented a policy wherein they lower the price of one 6300 champion to 4800 every time a new champion is released, and every three releases they lower the price of another champion lower on the tier scale.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: In contrast to the mostly Bloodless Carnage of the earlier cinematics, several of the champions killed in 'A New Dawn' suffer quite nasty deaths: Draven gets ripped apart by Rengar's claws, with his blood flying everywhere, Katarina gets her head blown off by Graves' explosive round-firing shotgun, Jax is smashed to death by Nautilus' gigantic anchor, Graves has his back broken by the same anchor and uses his Collateral Damage shell to blow himself up, and Nautilus is brutally crushed flat under the massive stone pillar Graves' sacrifice collapses on him. Averted by Zyra and Darius, who are killed by Ahri's magic, which isn't that painful-looking and Leona, who actually survived being smashed with Darius' giant axe.
  • Fanservice: Zig-zagged. In the game's earlier years, it had a large reputation of being a Hotter and Sexier MOBA with many a Ms. Fanservice present in the early roster. As time has went on, the game has tended to skew more canonically modest designs, with pure fanservice being relegated to the occasional non-canon skins, and even that alternates on an individual champion basis. This also applies to male champions, similarly alternating between modest and fanservice-y for those who are interested.
  • Fantasy Gun Control: Downplayed; guns, cannons, and other gunpowder-based weapons exist in various places across Runeterra and are wielded by many champions, but they're not omnipresent, not merely because magic exists (the lore has shown that firearms are perfectly valid weapons), but because guns are expensive; through a combination of monetary value, required resources, and level of expertise needed to craft them. Guns are more prominent in Piltover and Zaun specifically because they are so much richer than most of Runeterra, but they're still not produced en masse due to the resources —most prominently, hextech crystals— still being scarce, or with the case of Zaun, the manufacturing itself often being hasty and reckless to keep up with high demand.
  • Fantasy Kitchen Sink: League's champions draw from all sorts of lore and genres of both fantasy and sci-fi. There's are your standard wizards, warriors, and rangers, but there's also a Kumiho, Sun Wukong, various flavors of Bare-Fisted and Warrior Monks, Eldritch Abominations that want to gain knowledge by vaporizing the things it analyzes, vampires, werewolves, characters that wouldn't feel out of place in the genre of Wooden Ships and Iron Men, the dual embodiment of death itself, a young Adventurer Archaeologist who has made a name for himself exploring ruins of a civilization that's an Expy of Ancient Egypt, the gods of said civilization, and a race of animal-like humanoids that are expert trackers and inventors. Oddly enough, outside of non-canon cosmetic skins, there's nary a mention of elves, dwarves or orcs, three staples of the fantasy genre. There are trolls, though. Riot specifically tries to invoke this in a unique way by taking something from stereotypical fantasy, and putting a unique and different spin on it.
  • Fictional Constellations: In the lore, constellations are a significant cultural aspect on Mount Targon, as the constellations are each a symbol of the Aspects.
  • Flash Step: Several champions have an ability that utilize this, such as Ezreal's Arcane Shift, but the Flash summoner spell lets you do this with any champion. Despite its hefty cooldown and its range not being the most apparent, the ability to instantlynote  blink onto a destination, even over walls, is a valuable tool to both save your bacon and potentially doom someone else's.
  • Fog of War: You can only see areas within the immediate vision of your team's units. To gain greater vision, that's what allied units and sight wards are for.
  • Fragile Flyer: While all units fight from the same perspective and are vulnerable to the same abilities, flying characters in particular seem to crumple faster under fire. Standout mentions are Anivia, Aurelion Sol, and Bel'veth who, despite being canonically god-tier in terms of power, are all incredibly squishy defense-wise and need to position carefully in battle.
  • Freeze Ray: Many champions in the game have ice powers (especially those from The Freljord), but several items and abilities in the game are more universal:
    • Everfrost is a Mythic-tier mage item that comes with solid AP, ability haste, and health, and has an active ability that allows the user to blast out a conic wave of ice every 30 or so seconds — enemies caught in the general cone are slowed, but those in the very center are rooted in place. Rylai's Crystal Scepter is another mage item that's most notable for its passive, causing all offensive abilities the user wields to additionally apply a frosty slowing effect on enemies.
    • The Iceborn Gauntlet is a Mythic-tier tank item that periodically creates zones of ice upon attacking enemies.
    • Glacial Augment is a keystone rune that enhances certain attacks to freeze and slow enemies. Very originally, it provided minor slows from basic attacks, but had an additional passive (itself titled "Freeze Ray") which created much bigger icy zones if an enemy was hit by an item's active ability. This ended up being incredibly specific as at the time of its introduction, only two items could trigger this effect (Hextech GLP-800 and Twin Shadows, both have since been removed, though the former was functionally reworked into Everfrost). As of 2022, it was changed so now Glacial Augment creates the freezing zones to accompany any immobilizing ability, making it harder for enemies to escape.
  • Friendly Fireproof: Unlike earlier entries in the MOBA genre, LoL did away with denyingnote  as Riot found it counterintuitive and unsatisfying. Originally Gangplank's Raise Morale ability required him to execute a friendly minion to motivate all nearby allies but this was removed when Riot realised it was no different from denying and gave Gangplank an unfair advantage over his opponent. This also extends to champions themselves, with absolutely no abilities in the entire game that allow you to directly cause harm to your own teammates. The trope would finally be subverted with the release of Renata Glasc, whose Hostile Takeover ultimate briefly makes enemies struck by it turn on and attack each other, although it's still completely impossible to intentionally do damage to an ally (which is not to say you can't use utility abilities like Cataclysm or Tempered Fate in a way that can screw them over if you're that kind of player).
  • Friendly Shopkeeper: The shopkeepers for the Howling Abyss, Gregor and Lyte, are nothing but friendly and polite to the Champions. They offer their wares with glee, commend them for making a good choice, and wave them off with enthusiasm when they leave, regardless of whether or not they bought anything. The only people they don't seem to like are each other and Watchers (and yordles) in Gregor's case.
  • Fun with Acronyms:
    • Do you honestly think it was an accident that a name was chosen that could be shortened to "LOL"?
    • Ultra Rapid Fire (in honor of Urf the Manatee) and its sequel New Ultra Rapid Fire, which would have drastically increased cooldowns and decreased auto-attack rate to promote more "strategic" gameplay. Sadly, it got corrupted just before release, and emerged a slightly more balanced version of U.R.F.
    • Corki rides a Reconnaissance Operations Front-Line Copter.

     Tropes G-H 
  • Game-Breaking Bug: Naturally, as a game that's constantly evolving and is host to a new major patch every month or so, this is inevitable. Just about every major event comes along with a bug that renders a champion or game mode unusable for a few days.
    • Mordekaiser's initial ultimate (which revived dead champions as wraiths) was infamous for creating game-breaking bugs. That his code had become a sentient and malevolent AI hampering Riot has become a meme within the community.
    • Riot's initial attempt at running a Clash tournament caused a slew of Game-Breaking Bugs as their servers were completely unprepared for the amount of people wanting to play at once. This resulted in the cancellation of Clash for a while while Riot upgraded their servers and staggered Clash times.
    • Patch 9.14 is infamous because it ended up introducing several of these, from Annie permanently having her stun available, Mordekaiser stopping you from casting any spell inside of his Death Realm, Sivir's Ricochet not bouncing, Qiyana's Edge of Ixtal dealing 0 damage, just to name a few. So many champions, items, and runes were broken to the point it took almost an entire day of Ranked and several characters being disabled just to fix all of these bugs,
    • In season 10 certain characters such as Illaoi, Poppy, and Kayn could be exploited to hit globally with certain attacks, causing all champions on the enemy team to inevitably die as they were hit with an unavoidable barrage. This bug remained in some form for months before it was finally patched out.
    • Viego's release brought a slew of bugs, including bugs where he could stack infinite Aurelion Sol stars into a ring of death around himself, he permanently stole champions' abilities, or a bug with transforming into Senna and then Rell that flat out crashed Summoner's Rift.
    • Upon release, Jhin's Shan Hai Scrolls skin had no visible W animation, allowing him to root people with no clear visual indicator that he was doing so. The skin was disabled soon after this discovery to allow Riot to repair the bug.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation:
    • Flying champions are equal to walking champions, champions benefit from weapons despite having a weapon, et cetera, for versatility.
    • Abilities that really shouldn't affect certain champions do regardless- plenty of players have pointed out some nonsensical things like "How can Teemo blind Lee Sin?" or "How can Cassiopeia turn Malphite into stone?"
    • Some of the champion stat scalings are a bit weird. For example, it makes perfect sense that some of Nidalee's abilities would deal magic damage, since she magically turns into a big cat. It makes...less sense when one of those abilities that deals magic damage is throwing an apparently mundane spear.
    • None of the gameplay is canon anymore, which means that now that the Institute of War is gone, Riot doesn't need to come up with an explanation for how your team of, say, Darius, Zed, Lux, Jhin and Vel'koz can function even though a high-ranking Noxian officer is unlikely to have good relations with a Demacian patriot or an Ionian who started a ninja order specifically to kill Noxians, Jhin is a serial killer who Zed has bad blood with, and Vel'koz is an Eldritch Abomination that all of the others should want to kill as quickly as possible.
  • Glass Cannon: Marksman, Assassin, and Skirmisher champions are designed to deal tons of damage very quickly. Their defensive stats and abilities are usually quite low.
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Evil: An anti-villainous version occurs with the three factions fighting for control of the Freljord. Ashe is the most conventionally Good, fighting for peace and unity. Sejuani is the Bad, being perfectly willing to raid and pillage innocent villages. And then there's Lissandra, who while having the noble goal of delaying the Watchers' return, loosely fits Evil due to the extremes she goes to and her occasional megalomaniacal tendencies. (Before Lissandra was rewritten to be an anti-villain this was played much more straight.)
  • Grandfather Clause: Several little nuances that the game started with would likely never have been implemented today, but are kept in because they give the game its identity. One example is the counter-intuitive ADC itemization; most Attack Damage items are swords or other melee weapons because Riot thought that teams would ubiquitously have melee carries like Master Yi or Tryndamere instead of ranged ones like Ashe or Caitlyn. It would be unthinkable, however, to change the Bloodthirster or Infinity Edge swords into bows or guns since they've stuck in the minds of millions of players already.
  • Grapple Move: Several champions have a "pull" ability which can grab and stop enemies, derailing their positioning and putting them at a massive disadvantage to capitalize on. The "catcher" subcategory of support champions are largely about initiating trades and teamfights singlehandedly with a well-placed grab, such as Blitzcrank with his rocket fists, Thresh with his sickle/chain combo, and Pyke with his jagged harpoon.
  • The Gunslinger: A number of champions utilize guns or cannons as their weapons, all across different technology levels, capabilities, and archetypes. A few of the items (mostly for marksmen) are also represented as firearms, such as The Collector and Rapid Firecannon.
  • Guys Smash, Girls Shoot: Though there are exceptions the majority of male human characters are melee Fighters or Tanks, and the majority of the female human characters are either Marksman or Slayers. Some of the notable inversions include: Lucian and Graves, male marksmen who fight with a pair of magic pistol-like rune weapons and a hextech shotgun respectively; and Vi, Shyvana and Illaoi, powerful (and in the case of Illaoi outright amazonian) female bruisers who smash their opponents into a pulp with armoured gauntlets or a heavy blunt object.
  • Hammerspace: You can carry up to six items, which can be breastplates, katanas, axes... none of them are even shown being held by your character or appear on their person.
  • Hat of Power:
    • Rabadon's Deathcap is a powerful mage item represented as a quite spooky, possibly even sentient-looking wizard cap. Not only does it provide solid ability power on its own, it also increases a champion's overall ability power by percentage, making it imperative to mages with high scaling and/or snowballing potential.
    • Before it was removed, there was also the modest and normal-looking Wooglet's Witchcap, a stastically nerfed version of Rabadon's for the Twisted Treeline map that also contained the stasis effect of Zhonya's Hourglass.
  • Heroic Willpower: A number of abilities, particularly ultimates, have some champions just plow through whatever enemies throw at them through sheer force of will.
  • Home Field Advantage: Zig-zagged. While all champions can use them, champions like Rengar, Teemo, Maokai and Caitlyn have skills or passives that shine while hidden on them and will get even more dangerous after an Ocean Drake changes the landscape by growing more brushes around the map. Likewise, an Infernal Drake will wipe most of the jungle brushes, rendering their skillsets less efficient.
  • Homing Boulders: All ranged autoattacks and single-target spells will track you, most obviously from caster minions and turrets, whose projectiles are fairly slow, but some player abilities can also do this even if they're not supposed to be magical in nature. To give yourself an idea, watch this video in which Caitlyn fires a single-target shot at Ahri, but Ahri manages to teleport back to the fountain just in time to dodge the shot, then she teleports near the top left corner of the map and dashes right behind a low-health Teemo... killing Teemo in the process because Caitlyn's ultimate was following Ahri during the whole time.
  • Hotter and Sexier: Compared to other MOBA games, League of Legends is known for lots of fanservice - for everybody, male or female. To begin with, we have champions that show a lot of skin such as Sivir, Pantheon, Jinx, Tryndamere, Lee Sin, Leblanc, Evelynn, Janna and Yasuo. Then we have notoriously well-endowed women like Sona, Ahri, Katarina and Miss Fortune and manly, handsome, muscular men like Graves, Jayce, Taric, and Braum. Then we have notoriously shapely women like Fiora, Vayne, Quinn, Ashe, Syndra and Nidalee. And then we have Sexy Whatever Outfits like Nurse Akali, Battle Bunny Riven, Debonair Jayce, Headmistress Fiora, Pool Party Graves, and Officer Caitlyn. A lot of skins are meant to take a champion, an sexify them up, just for fun. Notably, this applies to female champions more than male champions, but the list of both is ever growing, and everybody loves it.
  • Hypercompetent Sidekick: The ideal support is this during the laning phase compared to their carry partner as they have more utility and are often stronger/tougher at the early levels. Their job of "babysitting" the ADC while he farms covers quite a bit: warding the lane, harassing the enemy, healing, buffing, zoning, engaging in fights that will score your lane kills, and holding the lane when your ally goes back to base, all while preventing the enemy support form doing the same. Done correctly, all the effort goes to making a powerhouse by way of Magikarp Power that then surpasses the support.
  • Hyperactive Metabolism: In a more literal manner — poros of the Howling Abyss will accept poro snax from champions to eat. This will immediately cause them to grow larger, so a number of champions feeding a single one poro-snax will quickly cause it to grow it several times larger than its original size.

     Tropes I-J 
  • I Call It "Vera": A lot of champions name their weapons. Miss Fortune's twin pistols are named Shock and Awe, Graves' enormous shotguns are Destiny and New Destiny, Jinx has Pow-Pow the minigun and Fishbones the rocket launcher, Trundle has his giant club Boneshiver, and more.
  • Improbable Weapon User: When you have over 150 characters who need to be unique and distinct from each other, you end up with a LOT of these.
    • Jax currently provides the page image for being a renowned master of many weapons, but presently chooses to wield a lamppost. Admittedly, it's implied to be tinged with ancient Icathian light, but viably wielding a lamppost against enemies with swords, guns, or magic is quite the accomplishment.
    • Gragas beats people with a cask full of wine, which he also rolls or throws at people, causing it to violently explode.
    • When Nautilus was being dragged him to the ocean floor by some unknown force, he desperately tried to cling to his ship's anchor, but his former crewmates cut it loose. Now he uses it as a club and grappling hook.
    • Braum bashes people with a heavy metal door which he mainly carries as a shield (making it also a Shield Bash).
    • Illaoi is a priestess who crushes her opponents with her god's heavy golden idol. Judging from the handle on it, it was admittedly designed with this function in mind. Nagakabouros is not a gentle god.
  • Incendiary Exponent:
    • Aesthetically, some champions and skins also feature bodies cloaked in flames, especially regarding the descriptively-named "Infernal" line of skins.
    • In terms of function, any item with an "Immolate" passive deals Scratch Damage to nearby enemies every second, with Sunfire Aegis emphasizing scorching enemies apart in extended fights.
  • Ineffectual Loner:
    • Enforced. Your champion may be a One-Man Army, but your opponents are too. In general, if you ever get into a fight where you're outnumbered by the enemy, you're about to die.
    • There is one circumstance when lone-wolfing it can be effective: if you're going to "jungle". The jungler, instead of laning, goes through the forested areas in the middle of Summoner's Rift, leveling by fighting the neutral creeps that live there. In addition to freeing up his (meant-to-be) lane partner to gain his share of G and EXP, he also gets to create ambushes, or 'ganks' with his (in-lane) teammates. The jungler can also 'invade' or initiate incursions into the jungle on the side of the enemy, to steal resources from the enemy jungler.
    • Illaoi is also a possible aversion thanks to her ult, which spawns a tentacle for every enemy it hits. Since her tentacles can put out massive amounts of AoE damage (and heal her with every strike) Illaoi is the one champion practically designed to fight large numbers of enemies at once (she was the first character designed in the Juggernaut category after it was properly codified). Of course, she'd still prefer to have backup, but a fed Illaoi can potentially fight almost the entire enemy team at once on her own if they lack the burst to kill her quickly enough or the CC to lock her down.
  • Injured Vulnerability: In a sense, being low on health makes one particularly vulnerable to the numerous "execution" abilities in the game (those that deal more damage if its target is low on health). Most smart players will not use these abilities at the start of fights but rather will make a beeline for you if you're low, making Tactical Withdrawal a smart option in these cases.
  • Instant 180-Degree Turn: Champions can run in one direction, near-instantly turn around to deliver an autoattack, then resume running, which allows things like "kiting" to be feasible. This is rather noticeable compared to DOTA and its more direct derivatives which have a delay for turning around that must be accounted for.
  • "Instant Death" Radius: This tends to be the defining aspect of "hyper carries" other than item dependency. Once fed, entering the attack range of a Kog'Maw, Jax or similar champion will result in death even if there are three of you and the carry is alone. The only way to avert this is to lock it down with so much CC that it never even gets to attack.
  • Insistent Terminology: The characters are champions, not heroes. This was a move by Riot to distance themselves from DOTA and its more direct clones though some players (and even professionals on-camera) still refer to them as heroes for familiarity and brevity. This also extends to the classes; while Riot has the term 'Marksman' to represent champions who deal physical damage from range, players called them all ADCs after doing so for years, but you'll rarely see a Rioter use the term, always using the term 'Marksman.'
  • Instant-Win Condition: Knock down their Nexus and that team loses. Even if they have twice as many kills as you, you have a Nexus and they don't, so they lose.
  • It Only Works Once: The Stopwatch item exists solely for its active ability, which is to self-inflict a "stasis" effect that renders its owner completely immobile, but also completely immune to everything for a few seconds, allowing them to potentially survive incoming fatal attacks. It only has one use before it becomes a "Broken Stopwatch" for the rest of the game, and considering how the item goes for a not-insignificant price and otherwise provides no other stats, it should be used carefully if they don't intend on buying the upgraded Zhonya's Hourglass (the ability recharges after a long cooldown, but the item is mostly for AP mages).
  • Item Crafting:
    • A derivation of Defense of the Ancients' recipe system. Items are bought using gold and have useful effects in and of themselves, but once you have the right combination of them, you click a button, pay some more gold, and turn them into a new item. The reason the interface is awesome is that it shows and allows you to purchase not only your current item's ingredients, but displays what items it goes into as well, allowing you to simply bring up the item you are ultimately planning to build, and just buy the pieces one by one as you gain the necessary cash.
    • Outside of the battlefield, there's a Hextech Crafting system that allows players to get champions and skins just by playing the game. How it works is that you get Hextech Chests by playing games and earning at least an S- rank (this can only happen 4 times a month and only with different champions), and they can be unlocked using Hextech Keys, which can be formed using 3 Key Fragments that randomly drop with every win (or you could just buy both of them). Once unlocked, the chest will give you "Shards" of a random champion or skin (legendary and ultimates are possible!) along with "Essence." From there, you can either permanently gain the champion/skin Shard using Essence, "disenchant" it for Essence, or re-roll 3 Shards of the same type into a new one. There are also "Rare Gems" that drop... well, rarely, and with those you can purchase skins such as Hextech Annie or Soulstealer Vayne which are only obtainable through this system.
  • Joke Character: Urf the Manatee, who attacks with a spatula. There was some debate as to if he'd actually be in the game since he was launched as an April Fool's joke, deleted, then brought back, and deleted yet again. Now lives on literally in spirit as a skin for Warwick and Corki and as a ghost that sometimes shows up on the map.

     Tropes K-L 
  • Katanas Are Just Better: Youmuu's Ghostblade, whose icon is a katana inside purple ripples with some cherry blossoms floating around it, is a Legendary item to buy that provides attack damage, flat armor penetration, cooldown reduction, and has an activatable ability that gives faster attacks and movement for up to 8 seconds. A number of champions from Ionia wield katanas as well.
  • Kill Streak: Two types of these:
    • Just racking up a kill streak without dying will cause the announcer to declare after 3, 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8+ kills respectively: killing spree, rampage, unstoppable, dominating, godlike and legendary. A variation in that it does not give anything to the player, but rather gives a nice gold bonus to whoever kills them, ending their run. Thus, those with a long streak become primary targets and hunted by all. Of course, those who can get a long streak tend to be good players who are now well-fed ...
    • Getting a kill streak in a very short time, with no more than ten seconds between kills, is a double-, triple-, quadra- and finally pentakill. Pentakills are considered quite the feat amongst players.
  • King Mook: Baron Nashor and Elder Dragon are the biggest creeps on Summoner's Rift (Vilemaw also filled the same role while the Twisted Treeline map existed). They have about the same amount of HP as an entire team of champions, give you a very powerful buff if you kill them, can kill champions if you engage them incorrectly, and are living Schmuck Bait: if the other team realizes you're fighting them, they will attack from behind while you're otherwise engaged and try to kill the mook, you, or both.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Teams can vote to forfeit a game with the Surrender option, provided that all (or all but one) team members agree to do so, and a certain amount of time has passed. Since there is no downside to surrendering apart from losing, teams will often do this when a match is no longer considered worth fighting so that they can move on, perhaps to start another game.
  • Last Chance Hit Point: Several items have a "Lifeline" passive (including the Immortal Shieldbow, Sterak's Gage, and Maw of Malmortius) that invoke this idea, where upon the user getting bursted down a significant fraction of their maximum health, it grants a large shield and other bonus effects. It takes a long cooldown to recharge, it doesn't outright guarantee survival if the onslaught is especially fierce, and each Lifeline item is mutually exclusive, but if you know the enemy has high burst damage you'll need to endure, it can singlehandedly turn the tide of a teamfight.
  • Lead the Target: Unless your opponents are standing still, you must get good at this to effectively use any skillshot-dependent champions. Taken to its logical extreme by Ezreal, Ashe, and Draven, whose ultimate abilities can fly across the map to doom an enemy champion, but the shot requires large amounts of this due to their travel time.
  • Lethal Harmless Powers: When formulating a team-fight strategy, remember that in League of Legends, the best defense is a good offense. Some of the ally-targeted abilities that are the best in the game for saving teammates (such as Shen's Stand United or Kayle's Divine Intervention) can be used preemptively to give a high-DPS but frail ally an invaluable few seconds to inflict their damage and break the enemy's formation up.
  • Lethal Joke Character: Figuratively, this happens unintentionally every once in a while. Being a competitive game, there are no deliberately bad or overpowered champions, but most players are well aware of which champions, items and summoner spells are weak. Every once in a while a new strategy emerges that employs one of those "useless" features to devastating effect.
  • Level Grinding: The start of every match involves this, but to a lesser extent than DotA, which (in general) took twice as long to complete a match in as this game. Solo-laners will probably reach the level cap of 18 and have a mostly complete set of items in just about 20 minutes.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Many, many melee champions are capable of becoming this; the Diver subclass of champion is specifically supposed to invoke it. Those that aren't meant to be are usually Glass Cannons with tanky builds or Mighty Glaciers that add speed through abilities or items.
  • Limited Loadout:
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: Inverted very literally. While League of Legends was the first Multiplayer Online Battle Arena to give mages item-based scaling with AP, the defining feature of "attack-damage carries" is their quadratic scaling off of several multiplicative stats, giving them incredibly high damage when fully built.
  • Long Song, Short Scene: Starting from 2012 onward with Lulu's release, the game client's login page became the game's platform for promoting new music, mainly themes for champions and special events. However, unless you're specifically waiting to hear it, it's very unlikely you'd want to stick around and not simply load into the actual game to hear more than a few seconds of it. The situation got harsher between 2019-2022 as the client began shifting to a different login system without music, so while new champion themes were being made, none of them were available in the game itself (though starting from Renata Glasc in 2022, they've returned to in-client splash screens).
  • Lord British Postulate: "Poros" are small furry creatures which appear on the Howling Abyss map that are cannot be selectable as targets and cannot be attacked by players by any means... but they'll move away from you if you approach them, and the lazer beam of death protecting a side's summoner platform can kill them when they end up within its range. Patch v3.8 made this... less easy.
    "Poros have gone through an 80s action movie training montage and now have some resistance to lasers."

     Tropes M-N 
  • Magitek: The technology Hextech is essentially this, but with Steampunk aesthetics. Hextech weapons and items basically are meant to allow anybody to use magic, whereas otherwise, in Runeterra, magic is only accessible by those born with it.
  • Mana Meter: Most champions use mana when they cast abilities. Both their total mana reserve and the rate at which it replenishes itself increase with champion level and items. There are some exceptions and variations on the theme, which vary from constantly regenerating Energy, to Fury that needs to be generated on attacks, to more specific resources. See the Character page for the individual champions to see more details on those.
  • Martial Pacifist: The faction of Ionia and the majority of its champions. As Noxus found out the hard way, just because they preach balance and pacifism, it doesn't mean they won't fight back hard against invasion and fight back dirtily if they have to.
  • Mask of Power: Several items are represented as spooky-looking masks, most of which have something to do with magic-based stats.
  • Mechanically Unusual Class:
    • Every champion has a unique skillset and playstyle, with many of them having access to something that no other champion can replicate (for instance, Singed's Poison Gas). Some champions stand out, though, for having their skills arranged in a different way than the usual "3 active abilities on Q, W, and E, one ultimate ability on R, one passive" formula. Some have a second passive that you need to slowly rank up as you would a regular skill, and other shapeshifting champions have upwards of 6 or 7 abilities that change depending on what form the character is currently in.
    • There are also more champions being released now who are designed to be unusually functional to the Metagame. Riot is well aware of the fact that the standard "bruiser/tank top, bruiser/tank jungler, mage/assassin mid, ADC and support duo bot" meta is the most common way the game is played, so in order to make every character look, feel and play uniquely, they have to get tricky with champion capabilities. For some examples, Bard is a bot-lane support who heavily encourages global roaming, Kindred is a jungling ADC (other champions such as Graves and Quinn have also seen this role ever since, but they weren't intended to be), and Ivern is a pure support who exists as a roaming jungler due to a passive that makes it so he doesn't have to fight to gain a jungler's benefits.
    • The unquestioned definitive example of this in the game is Aphelios, a champion so bizarre that he's like an escapee from an entirely different game. He doesn't even have 4 skills, instead having one skill, one ultimate, and a toggle between his two equippable guns which all change what his skill does and run on an ammo system that causes them to cycle to his next gun whenever one runs empty. Oh, and he doesn't rank up his skill when he gains levels either, instead gaining his choice of more AD, AS or armour penetration.
  • Metagame: Changes all the time with new patches and characters. They're separate between the servers' regions, even. Champions/items/strategies can fluctuate between uselessness and overpoweredness due to the constant buffs, nerfs, tweaks and additions, even if they don't happen directly to your champion of choice. Understanding the meta and constantly keeping up with it is one of the most important things that distinguishes low and high skill levels between players.
  • Mirror Match:
    • Possible in Blind Pick matches, moreso if a certain champion is popular at the moment (just released, flavor of the month, etc.). Averted by Draft Pick (normals) and ranked games which use a different selection system that only allows one team to have a given champion.
    • One of the temporary game modes was All For One Mirror Mode, in which a 5v5 takes place where all ten players get to use the same champion. Hilarity Ensues.
  • Money Multiplier: A few champions have abilities or interactions that allow them to generate gold faster than others (usually ones with low initial numbers but high late-game scaling, and thus need the extra gold), and there exist several other universally-accessible methods:
    • Several items for support champions — such as Relic Shield, Spellthief's Edge, Spectral Sickle, etc. — are designed to passively grant bonus gold generation, allowing them to keep up a fair pace with gold income that they normally can't achieve when compared to the carries they're supporting (most also come with some kind of gold penalization for attempting to gain gold the usual ways of killing enemies). Other items interact directly with normal means of obtaining gold, such as Cull (a starting item that when bought rewards rapid farming up to a cap, to which it can then be sold for a net profit) or The Collector (a crit/AD assassination weapon that grants an extra 25 gold on kills).
    • Several runes also instill bonus gold. The First Strike keystone rune rewards proactive users who land the first hit on enemies with a window of bonus damage and gold scaling off said damage, and its now-retired predecessor rune, Kleptomancy, rewarded ability/basic attack combos with flat amounts of gold or one of several potential consumables, from elixirs to even more additional bundles of gold. Other lesser runes such as Treasure Hunter and Triumph also reward bonus gold on champion kills. Even in the pre-2018 runes and mastery systems, there existed options to slightly increase passive gold generation.
  • Monster and the Maiden: Downplayed with Lamb and Wolf, the Kindred. The two are a pair of spiritual entities representing death across Runeterra. Lamb is an anthropomorphic female... well, lamb in contrast to the much more animalistic male Wolf.
  • Morality Kitchen Sink: Not only do individual characters run across the morality gamut, no major faction in Runeterra can be called a fully "good" or "evil" nation, making things close to Grey-and-Gray Morality. Those who ascribe to traditionally positive traits can also be guilty of negative traits and vice versa (for example, Noxus is a brutal expansionist meritocracy known for its intense Might Makes Right attitude, but protects everyone under its rule and gives them the same opportunity to succeed, at least in theory). There are also Big Goods with Runeterra's protective deities and pure Big Bads with grand omnicidal threats, most primarily that of The Void.
  • Muggle in Mage Custody: Inverted with Sylas. He's a mageborn who is imprisoned for years by Demacia's intensely anti-magic government. He eventually escapes though and leads a rebellion of mages against the royal family.
  • Muggles Do It Better: Many Badass Normal champions that punch, kick, or shoot their way to victory without any magic often end up beating magic users in sheer DPS output with enough items.
  • Multiplayer Online Battle Arena: Trope Namer. The term MOBA was coined by Riot Games for League of Legends as a marketing term specifically because everybody referred to the genre as "DotA clones" and they didn't want their game always being compared to DotA.
  • My Rules Are Not Your Rules:
    • As the computer says, "Lag? What's that? Disconnectors? Griefers? You can do that?" They receive items on a timer, rather than buying it. Also see The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard.
    • One very particular reversal of this trope: if one of the humans doesn't manage to connect to the server, a bot will obligingly stay at home, turning the match into a 4v4. Human opponents, whose rules do not include this kind of chivalry, will happily use the edge in numbers to their advantage though this can backfire when one of their five turns out to be a major feeder (worse than being down one), and suffer the indignity of losing to a 4-man team.
  • Names to Run Away from Really Fast: Very few of the champions' actual names, but a great deal of their associated titles (The Terror of the Void, The Crimson Reaper, The Eternal Nightmare, The Saltwater Scourge, et cetera) count as these, especially if they're aligned to Noxus.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Sometimes your teammates will try help you with all the best intentions and end up screwing themselves (and you) over. Normally this is just limited to feeding an enemy a kill, though it can be worse, such as an overzealous jungler pursuing a weak foe into tower range and dying (transferring both powerful buffs) or one death setting off a chain reaction that causes the enemy team to Ace yours.
  • No Ontological Inertia: Fear, taunt, and suppression crowd control effects end as soon as the caster dies.
  • No Pronunciation Guide: Several early champions fall into this, causing no shortage of fan and even Rioter debates (Is Veigar "vay-gar", "vee-gar", or "vy-gar"? Is Shaco "shack-oh" or "shake-oh," etc.). Riot has since become more careful when naming champions to avoid this, with one measure being simply having the champion say their own name to confirm a proper pronunciation.
  • Not the Intended Use: Very prolific. You can search up each individual notable entry on their respective character sheets. A common one tends to be ratio abuses (depending on the champion and their kit) or on-hit abuses (building auto-attack-enhancing items on any champion that has any sort of ability that can apply such effects), but the most common simply occurs when a champion is played in a totally different position from where Riot intended them to be (most commonly the jungle or the support role, but it has also gone the other way with intended junglers or support champions finding places in solo lanes).

     Tropes O-P 
  • One Stat to Rule Them All: Averted. Having both magical and physical damage on a team is necessary to prevent the opposition from stacking one type of resistance to counter it. Conversely, stacking just health, magic resistance, or armor leaves a tank vulnerable to at least one type of damage. As for the individual disciplines, AD and AP are the main stats for physical and magical attackers (respectively) but stacking too much of these without itemizing for the secondary stats is usually a bad idea. For example, an AD Carry building nothing but AD will lose a 1v1 duel with another that is building a healthy combination of AD, Attack Speed, Armor Penetration and Critical chance. And this doesn't even go into hybrid champions who benefit from both AD and AP...
  • Pac Man Fever: Invoked with the Arcade skin line, where characters are given outfits and ability effects heavily reminiscent of 80's-90's video games, retro-style graphics, bright colors, digitized sound effects and all.
  • Percent Damage Attack: Some champions have this as a built-in mechanic for an ability (and anyone can gain this property for their autoattacks with Blade of the Ruined King) and it is usually a percentage of maximum HP instead of current. This is usually a handy way to circumvent opponents that are stacking HP though since these attacks are usually physical or magical damage, they can be mitigated with armor or magic resistance. There are a few exceptions, however: Vayne, Fiora, and the Redemption item's active have percent maximum health true damage, while Garen has percent missing health true damage.
  • Perpetual Beta: The game is in its official release, but it's patched roughly every couple of weeks, and it will probably only end if the game's plug was pulled entirely. Being a PC-multiplayer game, along with the 150+ playable characters that are always being re-balanced against each other to prevent a severe game-breaker, this was probably expected. More significantly, the game still regularly receives major changes to even its core mechanics, usually at the end of every season, with entire systems being ripped out, orverhauled, or replaced with new ones. The entire map was replaced with an updated version in 2014, and the Rune and Mastery systems were entirely removed in 2017, replaced with a new Runes Reforged system that had nothing in common with the old one. The jungle in particular seems to get turned on its head practically every year, as Riot can never quite seem to get the role quite the way they want it.
  • Person as Verb:
  • Pick-Up Group: Solo Queue. This game takes this up to eleven since it's next to impossible to encounter players in ways besides queueing up and getting placed in a Pick-Up Group with them (external forums and chatrooms nonwithstanding). New players starting out have no choice but to get randomly matched with others and a player will still have to team up with randoms quite a bit throughout their career. Thankfully it can be averted (or at least mitigated) by encountering friendly/skilled players and adding them as friends so that pre-made groups can enter queue to reduce the chance of running into leavers, feeders, or trolls. Unless of course said player is the leaver, feeder, or troll.
  • Pigeonholed Voice Actor: Some of recurring voice actors, especially early on, voiced champions with similar playstyles. Examples include Adam Harrington, who voices deep-voiced, "dark" mage champions (Mordekaiser, Kassadin, pre-VU Karthus, etc.), J.S Gilbert, who voices usually-thickheaded champions with devastating physical attacks (Pre-VU Sion, Dr. Mundo and Udyr) and Karen Strassman, who tends to voice cooldown-based neutral-to-evil Half-Human Hybrid characters (Elise, Shyvana, Zyra, etc.).
  • Play Every Day: The first match you win every 20 hours gets you a pretty sizable XP and BE bonus.
  • Player Tic: Players tend to click excessively while moving, especially when it doesn't affect their character's pathing. Lampshaded by pre-VU Mordekaiser's quote "You only need to click once, fool!"
    • If playing in free-camera mode, it's a common tic to constantly tap the "focus on me" button (usually spacebar) even if the last re-focus was moments ago. The alternative is just switching to locked-camera mode during important teamfights, though most prefer to keep it free-camera so they can spot something outside their field of view.
  • Plunder: It's been said that the game is won (at least at higher levels of play) by towers and gold, not by kills. Standard operating procedure for mid-to-late game is capitalizing on kills and won fights by pushing towers while the enemy team is unlikely to defend successfully then plundering the enemy jungle to deny the enemy team further gold (in a kind of scorched earth tactic). This includes the highly-important Baron and Dragon camps.
  • Poor Communication Kills: One of the most avoidable ways to lose a match is to fail to communicate with your team. Your lane opponent went missing? Let everyone know. About to initiate a fight? Ping your target so everyone can follow up. An unguarded tower is being sieged? Speak up! Riot has taken note of how cumbersome it is to type some important messages (particularly if one is already under attack) so they implemented "smartpings" so calling "missing", asking for help, etc. can be done much faster.
  • Power Creep:
    • In a constantly-updating game with an already staggering roster of playable champions with the design intention to make each one play and feel unique from each other, newer champions are usually given new mechanics that can help distinguish them from others, but may also seem scary to introduce simply due to their mechanical value in the form of utility that may counter a few existing characters (such as Cassiopeia and Poppy being able to block dashes or Yasuo being able to block projectiles), or their design to be a counterpick to a vast amount of what the current Metagame suggests (such as Talon and Zed being AD melee assassins in the midlane typically occupied by AP caster mages). This trope has always been kept in mind during champion development as to prevent unstable balance (hence Riot's tendency to nerf strong champions rather than buff weaker champions), but typically when a champion with meta-challenging mechanics are introduced, they will almost assuredly not be considered adequately balanced until the next patch at the very least.
    • Perhaps the most notable case of this was the balance controversy of Irelia, who was designed to be a mobile assassin-bruiser, which during the time of her creation, when most champions were either straight tanks or burst mages, was something risky to design for, but necessary for the game to evolve. Riot's solution was to overload her kit with an absurd amount of elements which would be considered excessive even by today's standards (Innate tenacity and lifesteal, an easily-to-reset gapcloser/damage nuke, true damage and point-and-click crowd control), which not only ended up frustrating players having to play against her due to how initially overpowered she was (as she could easily build into a tanky DPS who dealt massive damage and was unkillable), but also frustrated the balance team due to her kit now being a numbers nightmare. She wasn't considered balanced until a plethora of nerfs during Season 1 (hence the "better nerf Irelia" meme), and she now exists as a reminder to as to never design such an innately overloaded champion again.
    • One definite place of evolution in this regard is mobility. When League first came out, the game was much more "decisive" and based on larger macro play, with actual combat skewing more towards point-and-click abilities and stats. As the game developed, characters have found new means of being "expressive" and based more on player mechanics, resulting in more targeted skillshots and the increasing paradigm of mobility, allowing champions to make significant micro-movements within fights, though usually at some kind of risk (long cooldowns, tied-in utility, need for on-kill resets, etc.). Nearly all new champions (and even several older champions following gameplay updates) have some kind of movement spell, which causes a bit of chaos when put against those who were made for the old, non-mobile paradigms (the entire marksmen class in particular has to deal with this issue as their draw is largely on point/click-based auto-attacks). The debate on whether those left behind should get up with the times and find new ways to combat mobile champions, or new champions should avoid being mobile at all is a continuous one, but it's widely accepted that mobile champions are usually much stronger (or at the very least, more versatile), hence their prevalence in high and pro levels.
  • Power of the Void: The Void is an eldritch world that seeks to consume all that it encounters. This is exemplified in its associated champions, all of which 'hunger' for something, be it literal hunger, or something metaphorical like a hunger for knowledge or change.
  • Power-Up Food: The Total Biscuit of Everlasting Will contains the same health regenerative properties of a health potion while also granting slight instant health and mana.
  • Pragmatic Adaptation: Wild Rift, a mobile adaptation of the game, made significant design changes in order to streamline games to a shorter, more convenient length, and to make the touchscreen-based interface more feasible.
    • Each champion's level cap per game was reduced to 15 from 18, and minions passively grant a reduced amount of gold even if they aren't last-hit, allowing the overall progress of the game to go by much quicker.
    • Some of the map's terrain has been compacted, most notably with each team's nexus base. Inhibitors and their protecting turrets are merged into a single structure, causing super minions to permanently spawn when taken down. The nexus also no longer has two protecting turrets, but it instead fires turret shots of its own one at a time.
    • Due to the game's "dual control stick"-esque control scheme, causing the bottom left and right corners of the screen to be covered majority of the time, the camera angle provided to players on the red team are flipped 180 degrees to be consistent with that of the blue team, avoiding unfair clarity issues.
    • Several champion abilities, items, and loadout systems have been changed for quality-of-life and convenience purposes. This includes changing some point-and-click abilities into skillshots (like Annie's Disintegrate or Miss Fortune's Double Up), compacting all runes into a single page, and scaling down and/or shifting several items and summoner spells around (the Teleport summoner spell has been moved to being a purchasable item).
    • While the PC version had around 150 champions when Wild Rift was revealed, only 40 champions made it to Wild Rift's launch, partly due to the sheer amount of work required for eachnote , and partly due to how certain champions would be far more powerful and require more adjustment given the game's compressed scale.
    • In a change regarding content, several champions with revealing designs have been covered up in consideration to the younger age demographics of mobile gaming.
  • Prolonged Prologue: Riot described 2021 as a "year of The Ruined King", with most major champion and lore releases (sans the Dr. Mundo relaunch) focusing on Viego's attempt to conquer Runeterra. The year kicked off with Viego's release and the "Ruination" cinematic showing him instigating the Harrowing and claiming Isolde's soul from Senna, but the story either ended up stalling or moving backwards to detail more backstory — even with the release of Gwen in April, she alone didn't kickstart much forward momentum. It took until mid-June for additional lore to reveal what the Shadow Isles' forces were finally up to and how the heroes were beginning to fight back.
  • Properly Paranoid: The players themselves need to maintain vigilance at all times. When an enemy hero is visible, their icon shows up on the minimap... but there's Fog of War to consider. Ever since the meta-game pretty much mandated a jungler on every team, there's an ever-present fear of being ganked at any time during the laning phase (unless the enemy jungler is visible and likely attacking someone else). Even junglers themselves are not exempt from this- there is always the real possibility that the enemy jungler will sneak in to steal buffs and pick a fight when least expected.
    • Some champions have Invisibility Cloaks, like Teemo, Evelynn, Shaco and Twitch: they are always missing, and you have no idea why. Some players get annoyed if you spam them with numerous warnings; others get annoyed if you don't.
    • Most players won't even try to engage Baron Nashor (a huge, strong, neutral monster that gives multiple buffs when defeated) unless at least a couple of the enemy's players are dead. It generally only takes one time for players to get ganked while at Baron for them to never make that mistake again.
    • Similarly, most players know that if the entire enemy team is missing, do not wander off by yourself into an area with zero vision. Some have to cautiously venture into darkness to place wards and remedy the situation though some set forth expecting nothing to happen to them.
  • Proud Hunter Race: The Kiilash are a tribe of lion people whose society revolves around honor and the hunt. Status in their society is achieved through one's hunting prowess and collecting and displaying trophies of difficult kills.
  • Purposely Overpowered: The titular bots in the Doom Bots mode range from somewhat to grossly overpowered by having their normal abilities ramped up hugely or having the passives of several other champions at once. This is because they are still limited by their less-than-stellar AI, so the massive difference in abilities is the whole point of the game mode.

     Tropes Q-S 
  • Rasputinian Death: Are you a tank? Are you out of escape buttons? If yes, are your enemies all present at the same time your teammates are all absent? Take a deep breath. This won't be over any time soon.
  • Red Shirt Army: The minions, which spawn and die in droves. "Stay behind the minions" is one of the elementary rules of strategy, since one of their primary purposes is to draw turret fire away from the champions.
  • Retcon:
    • The lore entries of many champions have changed over the years, some in slight details, others in major character overhauls. The Institute of War and the League itself have been officially retconned away due to Riot believing the original "Combat by Champion" idea mediated by all-powerful Summoners was too restricting for the IP, so the premise of the game is now "What If? important persons from Runeterra fought each other?" Keep in mind though, due to the insane amount of characters with interconnected lore, while all the stories have slowly been unified, some of the backstories are considerably outdated.
    • Even the Institute-era lore had retcons. Yordles and Meglings were originally separate races — the tiny Yordles varied from somewhat animalistic little critters like Teemo to gnome-looking fellows like Heimerdinger and Corki, while Meglings were equally tiny, blue-skinned and white-haired, but otherwise humanoid. This was eventually retconned to make Tristana and Poppy yordles as well, with female Yordles having a "Megling" appearance and male ones having a more furry or hairy appearance. Devs state that this change was made because players would be confused by two species of tiny humanoids at once, as well as being somewhat redundant in the first place.
    • The name of the tribe of warrior mountain-dwellers to which champions Pantheon and Leona changed from the Stanpar to the Rakkor, most likely to make the parallels to the Greek Spartans a little less obvious.
    • At the same time Xayah and Rakan were released, Season 7 introduced the vastaya as a distinct taxonomy, essentially chimeric half-human/half animals. Several already-existing champions that fit the bill were retroactively made vastaya, including Ahri, Wukong and Nami, and other champions such as Udyr are implied to have vastayan blood.
  • Required Secondary Powers:
    • You need a good internet connection to play skill shot reliant champions or to lane against champs with heavy burst. Any significant amount of lag will make you a useless Ezreal or the latest in the long line of Ahri's victims.
    • Having good map awareness is always a good idea but it's almost a requirement to play champions with global ultimates (or those with such range that they might as well be) like Soraka, Shen, Gangplank, etc. Having an ability that can alter the course of battle halfway across the map only useful if you're watching for good opportunities to use it.
    • Orbwalking/kiting/shift-clicking is a mandatory skill for marksmen at intermediate to high levels of play. It's particularly Difficult, but Awesome to learn and execute consistently and isn't needed that much when playing against newbies who tend to focus the tank instead of a high-value target. However, sooner or later, an assassin/tank/bruiser WILL come after you, and you won't be of any use to your team if all you can do is shoot them twice before crumpling up and dying. Staying on the move while DPS'ing is the way to go.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter:
    • Poros appear on the Howling Abyss map, who are tiny furry ball-shaped animals with goat-like features and huge tongues that they frequently stick out like a dog. They were added to the map because playtesters thought the map was just a bit too dark and serious, and they've been considerable Breakout Characters ever since, taking the spotlight (until that went to Braum by its end) for the Trials of the Poro promotional video, then incorporated into "Legend of the Poro King" game mode, which introduces adorable variants such as gentlemen poros and astronaut poros.
    • Many of the Little Legends from Teamfight Tactics that serve as your playable "icon" are this, usually as fun-sized versions of monsters and critters from Runeterra's lore.
  • Rule of Three:
    • Trinity Force. It has 3 ingredients directly in its construction, raises 3 stats mainly (attack damage, attack speed, and cooldown reduction), and if you have all components, it costs 333 gold, its description is three words: "Tons of damage".
    • Three-hit passives have become something of a Running Gag in League of Legends' champion design, where a champion has an on-hit passive that triggers after 3 consecutive strikes. This is Champion Designer RiotAugust's Creator Thumbprint, and appears on all his champions (though for Jhin it's a 4-hit passive) but this has also appeared on champions such as Jax, Xin Zhao, Vayne, Kennen, Ekko, Yasuo, Talon...
  • Schizo Tech: Despite being a fairly magic heavy fantasy world, the lore journals reveal that Runeterra is actually pretty technologically advanced above and beyond their magical capabilities. Piltover, Zaun, and Ixtal all have their own takes on Magitek.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • Walking into brushes, or "face-checking" is considered a very bad idea when an enemy champion is missing but nearby. As a rule, by the time you realize it might be a trap, it's too late.
    • Some players have made Schmuck Bait into an art form. For instance, if you see an enemy recall in a conspicuous and vulnerable position, either you are playing against inexperienced people or he's baiting you into a trap. There are also specific character-based interactions that make champions look like easy targets until you realize they have an ability that counteracts that and will end up getting themselves killed. People still do things like towerdive an Anivia, forgetting that she has a resurrection passive, and of course, people still chase Singed, forgetting he leaves a constant poison trail and is slowly killing you.
    • Some items and powers also look like a good idea to new players despite being actually bad ideas. Taking Silver Bolts on Vayne at level 1 might make farming easier and increase damage output, but taking Tumble will also increase damage output, make proper farming easier and gives extra mobility. Building a Guardian Angel first seems like a good idea to many newbies, but in reality the revive is useless when your champion doesn't have the stats from other items to make good use of it.
  • Schrödinger's Canon:
  • Secret A.I. Moves: Available in a boatload in the Doom Bots mode. Triple shot Dark Bindings from Morgana? 8-directional Final Sparks from Lux? 16 global ulti shots from Ezreal? The list goes on and on.
  • Set Bonus: Several items only activate their signature features based on the type of items the player already currently has, generally meaning that they're limited to a specific build path, but act as a significant power spike once acquired for it. For example, Infinity Edge — which increases the damage of Critical Hits — only does so if the player has built at least 60% critical hit chance, and Warmog's Armor — which grants ridiculous amounts of health regeneration — only does so if the player has built at least 1100 bonus health.
  • Sex Sells: A common complaint early on was that any upcoming female champ with questionable choices in clothing meant that Riot is concentrating way too much on Fanservice. This became less prevalent later in the game's history, to the point where any given female champion is just as likely to be dressed sensibly as skimpily. More modern female champions such as Kalista, Illaoi, and Taliyah, as well as their skins, are dressed and proportioned without fanservice in mind, as well as a number of modest skins. These are alongside pure fanservice skins, which now also extends to male champions, so everyone's roughly receiving equal treatment.
  • Shaped Like Itself: Somewhat amusingly, League of Legends didn't actually have leagues until February 2013. The competitive scene got a revamp by placing summoners in leagues, within which exist tiers (bronze, silver, gold, platinum, diamond, and challenger) of players with similar skill level. This was to replace the old ELO system of matchmaking.
  • Shared Signature Move: Brothers Yasuo and Yone were both trained in the powerful "Wind Technique", allowing them to harness the power of the winds through sword fighting. This is reflected in-game by the two sharing similar Q abilities, "Steel Tempest" and "Mortal Steel". The move involves a single powerful sword thrust, but when landed twice, the brothers can each perform an empowered version that knocks their opponents skyward. Yasuo fires off a long-ranged projectile in the form of a tornado, and Yone dashes forward with a powerful cross slash that knocks up enemies right in front of him.
  • Ship Sinking:
  • During the Bilgewater event, in lieu of several fan-teases between Gangplank-Miss Fortune, they shot it down by having Miss Fortune attempt to murder Gangplank cold-bloodedly in the name of her mother's vengeance (making Gangplank her mother's murderer that she hates).
  • During the Targon event, they sunk the teasing between Pantheon-Leona by making them no longer childhood friends and the current identity of Pantheon, Atreus, being the one who caused Leona to be branded heretic by the Rakkorians and even after her departure, Atreus didn't seem to be fond on Leona's defensive approach... which is then furthered when Atreus died and then the real Pantheon, now an Aspect of War, took over his body, erasing his personality and memories.
  • The Ship Tease between Ezreal and Lux had become seriously downplayed over the years, which seemingly culminated with Lux's updated voiceover, where she asks if they were supposed to be dating when they canonically never even talked. However, the inclusion of Zoe revealed she (one-sidedly) considers Lux a rival for Ezreal's affection, implying the ship is still around, albeit one-sided on Ezreal's part. Averted in the recent years, as in some Alternate Universe timelines, Ezreal is treated as an Implied Love Interest to Lux. They even seem to be outright dating in the Battle Academia universe.
  • Ship Tease:
    • Lyte, the Northern shopkeeper on the Howling Abyss and Ezreal's uncle, will sometimes ask Ezreal about his relationship with Lux. This picture posted on the official forums of Ezreal's desk has a sketch of what appears to be Ezreal and Lux in the lower left corner, but he moved it when readers started asking about it. This would later be somewhat backtracked on in later years (see Ship Sinking above), though the "Star Guardian" Alternate Universe nods to this by having Ezreal almost immediately hitting on Lux in their first meeting. In the Battle Academia universe, they seem to be outright dating.
    • More prominent is the ship between Garen and Katarina, with several champions such as Tahm Kench and Jhin making reference to them in their taunts.
  • Shout-Out: See this page for the exhaustive list.
  • Silliness Switch: Several comedic skins (especially the ones with a different voice) are this. Watch as Cho'Gath (a monstrous Eldritch Abomination) becomes a hammy British-accented aristocrat with a tophat, or Olaf (a merciless viking warrior) becomes a boorish fratboy that swaps his horned helmet with a beer helmet and his axes with beer case cardboard cut-outs in the shape of axes! Or check out the Pool Party series, where the champions dress down for a day at the pool/beach (and their accompanying splash arts are often hilarious).
  • Single-Use Shield: Several spell shields can block a single enemy spell. Sivir has one that maxes out her passive if it intercepts a spell, Nocturne has one that briefly increases his attack speed if it intercepts a spell, and the items Banshee's Veil and Edge of Night provide a permanent one to whoever holds one of them that goes on an lengthy cooldown after it breaks.
  • Sliding Scale of Gameplay and Story Integration: Ever since the original concept of the in-universe League of Legends was retconned, the gameplay has slid all around this scale. On one hand, newer champions (including ones with visual updates and new voice clips) can interact with one another with specific emotes to other significant characters relevant to their lore, sometimes referencing past events within the lore itself. On the other hand, you can still have 2 allies fighting against each other or 2 rivals fighting alongside each other for no adequately explained reason. That said, the gameplay is now intended to be completely separate to the continuing lore and is completely inconsequential, so it's probably best not to question things.
  • The Social Darwinist: Noxus as a whole has this as an integral part of their culture. In contrast to Demacia (which has a strict hierarchy for its leadership and military), basically anyone can rise to power if they are strong enough, which explains the assortment of somewhat unsavory characters that are allowed to be champions. Exemplified in its extreme form by Darius who declares things like "Strength above all!" and is on a mission to eradicate the corrupt Noxian nobility on the grounds that they've done nothing to earn their positions of authority, and in its more realistic form by Riven who believed that individuals with merit have a responsibility to lead those that do not (at least prior to being broken).
  • So Last Season:
    • It's almost inevitable that champions will have increasingly more and more impressive kits than their older counterparts despite Riot's best intentions to keep every champion balanced. Whether or not this makes them more viable for gameplay is debatable (and fans do debate it very often) but the undeniable fact is that many champions released have more utility or options in their abilities. Riot is countering this with remakes of champions with comparatively flat kits that are completely outmatched by newer ones.
    • A more literal example are champions/team compositions that reign supreme one season then fall out of favor the next because of the cycle of nerfs. A good example is the "Holy Trinity" of ADC's (Corki, Graves, Ezreal) that dominated season 2 but have been equaled or surpassed by other carries' popularity in season 3. This isn't necessarily because of power-creep but more of Riot wanting to keep their game dynamic instead of falling into complacence.
  • Spirit World: The Spirit Realm adjacent to the realm of mortals, while it hasn't been directly explored as its own location, in many ways is just as important as the rest of the human world of Runeterra given just how often it seems to interconnect. Several traits of the realm:
  • Squishy Wizard: Many of the mages, mostly Burst (champions such as Brand, Veigar, and Lux, who are intended to simply dip in, explode a target and dip back out) and Artillery Mages (champions such as Xerath, Ziggs, or Vel'Koz who act as magic howitzers, constantly attacking from a long distance).
  • Status Effects:
    • Poison: Teemo, Singed, Cassiopeia, and Twitch are based around typical HP-reducing poison.
    • Burn: Brand and Gangplank are champions who have Burn as a DoT debuff, while others like Rumble and Shyvana only have it as a sustained moving-AoE DoT. There's also summoner spell Ignite, the jungle Red Buff, the Deathfire Touch mastery, and any items with the "Immolate" passive, such as Sunfire Cape.
    • Stun: A ton of champions, mostly tank or support champions have some form of it. Aside from a vanilla stun that prevents the target from attacking or moving, it comes in a few similar variants as well.
      • Root/Snare: It makes the target unable to move, but they can still attack.
      • Knockback: Stuns the target but also forces it move in a certain direction based on the ability's nature.
      • Airborne/Knockup: Stuns the target in place by knocking them directly upward. Typically, they can't be countered by Tenacity and the amount of time stunned cannot be reduced, but the durations don't last very long.
      • Pull: Some champions such as Blitzcrank, Thresh, Nautilus, Kled and Pyke have "hook" abilities that not only stun the target, but usually brings them towards them in some manner.
      • Suppression: Effectively the same as Stun, but can only be removed using Quicksilver Sash. Additionally, while the target is affected, so is the user.
      • Stasis: Usually a self-inflicted buff/debuff that causes the user to be unable to attack/move, but will become completely invulnerable. This exists in champions such as Bard, Lissandra and those Devoured by Tahm Kench, as well as from the Zhonya's Hourglass item and its component Stopwatch item.
      • Sleep: When applied on an enemy, it first marks them as "drowsy" for a moment, gradually slowing them before they properly fall asleep. While asleep, they're effectively stunned, and the next attack they're hit bynote  will deal bonus damage at the cost of waking them up.
    • Silence: A few champions such as Cho'Gath, Malzahar, Fiddlesticks, Soraka have abilities to block enemies from casting their abilities. Rumble's passive makes him do this to himself if he overheats. Lulu's Polymorph as part of her Whimsy spell counts as this and "Weird Transformation," as it causes the target to be unable to attack in any way (though it can still move).
    • Blind: Teemo's Blinding Dart causes enemy's auto-attacks to miss, but there's also Nearsight that greatly reduces vision, that some champions such as Graves, Quinn and Nocturne have access to.
    • Berserk: In the form of Taunt; Rammus, Galio and Shen have abilities that force the enemy into only auto-attacking them.
    • Charm: Forces targets to walk slowly and uncontrollably towards the champion casting the ability. Ahri's ability is straight-up called "Charm".
    • Slow: Too many champions to list have abilities that slow, which vary wildly in effectiveness. Some items also grant this debuff, such as Rylai's Crystal Scepter and the Iceborn Gauntlet.
      • Freeze: Some of the slows take on this form, which is why many of the ice-themed champions have at least one in their kit. Sometimes it takes the form of a completely stun such as with Lissandra or Braum, but they are effectively considered Stuns.
    • Fear/Flee: Some champions such as Fiddlesticks, Nocturne and Shaco have abilities that cause the targets to be slowed and run away from them. Other champions such as Darius or Aatrox have Fear debuffs that only extend to minions/jungle monsters, and don't serve that much purpose other than to look awesome.
  • Story Branching: The Rise of the Sentinels event has a degree of this, where stories progress by gaining points through completion of in-game criteria (vision score, structures taken, damage dealt, etc.), with said criteria opening up based on the people recruited in your Sentinel squad. After beginning the first "mission" in Demacia, players are given a choice on which faction to advance to, in turn giving a new recruit to advance with that will reward them for certain criteria. The player will eventually complete all of them before the story is finished, so it's mostly a matter of a player deciding how they want to advance the fastest.
  • Sugar Apocalypse: During the music video for "Mortal Reminder" the idyllic Bandle City (here portrayed as a simple Shire-esque village filled with harmless furry critters) is utterly leveled by the arrival of Pentakill. After the initial shock, the Yordles don't seem too bothered, though, as they end up rocking out with the band (although that may just be an effect of being struck by Karthus' Requiem).
  • Super Special Move:
    • Heimerdinger's ultimate ability, "UPGRADE!!!", makes his next ability free to cast and greatly enhances its effects:
      • H-28G Evolution Turret becomes H-28Q Apex Turret, deploying a much larger temporary turret that has bonus health and damage. Its rapid-fire machine gun attack also damages enemies around its main target and slows all targets hit, while its pass-through laser charges much more rapidly.
      • Hextech Micro Rockets becomes Hextech Rocket Swarm, sending out a devastating barrage of four waves of rockets that deal increased damage to the first enemy they hit.
      • CH-2 Electron Storm Grenade becomes CH-3X Lightning Grenade, lobbing a grenade that bounces three times, each bounce damaging and slowing nearby enemies, or stunning those in the center of the blast.
    • Karma's ultimate ability, "Mantra", empowers the next ability she uses:
      • "Inner Flame" becomes "Soulflare", increasing the damage dealt and leaving behind a field of energy on the ground that slows enemies inside and explodes for damage after a small delay.
      • "Focused Resolve" becomes "Renewal", increasing the duration of the immobilization effect and also healing Karma based on her missing health.
      • "Inspire" becomes "Defiance", increasing the strength of the shield and also granting a smaller shield and the movement speed bonus to other allied champions around the target.
    • Pantheon's "Mortal Will" gains a stack whenever he attacks or uses an ability, up to five. Upon reaching five stacks, his next basic ability gains an enhanced effect.
    • Using his basic abilities grants Rengar a stack of "Ferocity", up to four. Reaching four "Ferocity" stacks resets the cooldown of Rengar's basic abilities and makes his next basic ability consume all "Ferocity" stacks to gain an empowered effect and grant him a short burst of movement speed. However, all "Ferocity" stacks will be lost if Rengar stays out of combat for a few seconds.
    • Twister Fate's second ability, "Pick a Card", essentially acts as a booster for his next basic attack.
  • Support Power: The player gets two slots for universally-available "summoner spells" to bring into each game, most of them featuring cooldowns longer than a typical ability, but are important for accentuating their playstyles. Such effects include "Flash" for a Flash Step (an ability so versatile it's considered imperative almost all the time), "Heal" for a short burst of healing and movement speed, "Teleport" to get across the map in seconds, and "Smite" to deal instant damage to monsters (imperative for junglers).

     Tropes T-Z 
  • Tactical Rock–Paper–Scissors: A prevalent view in the metagame is the presence of different carry-support bot lane compositions: "sustain" (focus on healing to stay in lane and farm more), "poke" (harass the enemies until they are softened up or forced back to base), and "kill" (go aggressive and try to get kills early on) types. In theory, sustain beats poke by simply healing back damage done by harassment, poke beats kill by whittling down enemies from afar to the point where attempting to be aggressive is suicidal, and kill beats sustain by inflicting too much damage at once to heal back, hopefully enough to be lethal.
  • Title Drop: Not for League of Legends as the entire game, but the Howling Abyss map includes a ghost shopkeeper named Greyor who can have this to say about the map's past:
    "In a mighty, final surge, we overran them. We lifted them from the ground, and tossed them, howling, into the abyss! That must have killed them. Nothing could survive that fall."
  • Tome of Eldritch Lore: Several mage items are represented as evil books. The most powerful is Morellonomicon, which prevents enemies from healing themselves, and there are also lower-tier, largely stat-based component items such as Fiendish Codex and Lost Chapter.
  • Total Party Kill: Called out as an "Ace" by the announcer.
  • Touched by Vorlons: In the short story 'A Good Death', written to accompany Kindred's release, a young amateur actress (who specializes in playing the part of a beautiful maiden who falls prey to Wolf and Lamb) actually meets them herself when she wanders away from her troupe one night; although they tease her, they're only there to collect the lives of her troupe-mates who are ambushed and butchered by bandits while she's away. With the only thing she can salvage from the wreckage of the wagon being the two-faced Kindred mask worn by her co-star, she goes on to become a world-famous actress, legendary for her spellbinding portrayal of Kindred. In her old age, at the end of her final bravura performance (in front of royalty that is presumably the king and queen of Demacia themselves), she suffers a fatal heart attack and looks out to see the entire audience wearing Kindred masks as Lamb finally comes for her...
  • True Sight: Vision Wards and Oracle's Elixir allows one to see invisible champions and enemy wards in one place and anywhere the user goes, respectively. Regular Sight Wards only reveal the presence of un-stealthed champions.
  • The Unfettered:
    • Expanding on the idea that Demacia and Noxus are both morally neutral (see Morality Kitchen Sink above), the main difference between the two superpowers is that Noxus is willing to do whatever it sees necessary to come out on top. This explains why they use unsavory methods that some other factions wouldn't even consider like bringing their best soldiers Back from the Dead and liberally using assassins to eliminate threats. Likewise, their city-state champions include some shady characters that would likely be turned away by others since Noxus doesn't care who or what you are, so long as you have strength.
  • Units Not to Scale: Despite the size of several champions in the actual lore, most of them are made approximately the same size for gameplay purposes. Example: Gnar is about the size of a medium-sized dog, Aurelion Sol is the size of an entire solar system, and yet their in-game models are not very much different in size.
  • Unstable Equilibrium: This game, like most MOBA titles, features this quality, particularly via gank loops. If we're laning opposite each other and I kill you, I get a Gold and EXP advantage, not only from ganking you but because you then have to spend upwards of 75 seconds out of the fight (dead, respawning, traveling back up the lane). This G and EXP advantage lets me gain new equipment and abilities with which to repeat the process. When the page refers to a Champion getting "fed", it means that s/he was the beneficiary of this vicious cycle... and because it only has to happen two or three times for the advantage to become insurmountable, the match can be all but over within ten minutes. However, a small relief is that champions on a 3+ kill spree will yield an extra gold bounty upon being killed (referred to as being "shut down" by the announcer). It's not much- it caps at 200 bonus on top of the usual 300 for really, really fed enemies- but it helps.
    • And to help further, while base kill gold only goes to the killer, everyone on your team gets a bonus if one of you shuts down an enemy, and if you die multiple times without getting kills you start giving less gold to the enemy, normally 250 but can be dropped to 150 at 3 consecutive deaths.
    • In general, when a team has a large gold lead collectively (more kills, farm, and objectives) or controls more of the map (more towers destroyed and more wards placed) the game is very much in their favor. While mistakes do happen that can turn the tide of battle (a common example being getting caught out of position then getting yourself if not your teammates, allowing the enemy to counterattack while they have the numbers advantage), they are less and less likely the higher one goes up the ELO ladder. Most high-tier teams will capitalize on leads as hard as they can so that there's a little room for error as possible, making many games a Foregone Conclusion as to who will win after seeing the gold counts as early as 12 minutes in. This was addressed in Season 4 changes which provide more comeback mechanics for losing teams so that every game wasn't a Foregone Conclusion though time will tell how these affect the pace of the game.
  • Unwanted Assistance: Several champions in the game possess abilities that can alter the positions of enemies or put both allies/enemies at a Mutual Disadvantage. When used correctly are devastating, but when used poorly can save an enemy from death or make their efforts at killing your allies easier. This has become a bit of a meme in the community, usually to the tune of "I'm _________! I'm helping!" Some of them include but are not limited to Alistar's Headbutt, Bard's Tempered Fate, and Gragas' Explosive Cask.
    • A common meme in the LoL community is the phrase "I'm Jarvan! I'm helping!" This is said whenever Jarvan IV gets his teammates killed by trapping them in his ultimate, preventing them from escaping or maneuvering.
    • Janna's Monsoon has gained some notoriety for just how easy it is to screw one's team over inadvertently by repositioning enemies to where you really, really don't want them to be.
    • Their actual damage utility aside, to say that Malzahar's pet voidlings have gotten Malzahar players into trouble before would be an understatement. Riot took notice of these complaints and made significant AI changes to alleviate a lot of the problems caused by the voidlings. They now attack whoever Malzahar is using his ult on, hide in the brush with him... and dance along with him. And yet stuff like THIS inevitably happens.
    • Kalista's Oathsworn mechanic can backfire in many ways if used poorly. For example: Initiating an Oathsworn at the wrong time can get Kalista, her ally, or both, killed because the process require both to stand still for a long time, and she can do that only once per game; Oathsworning a wrong ally means wasted potential for the entire match. Even worse, Kalista's ultimate causes Interface Screw for her Oathsworn and can cause issues without proper communication between the pair; Kalista might ultimate to save her ally from danger, only for her ally to go back into the fray, or she might ult to engage only for her ally to shoot themselves in the wrong direction.
    • Kindred's ultimate can be just as bad as Jarvan's or Bard's, given that it is an area of invulnerability that applies to both the ally and enemy teams. Without proper communication and coordination, a Kindred who uses their ultimate will not only completely disrupt a teamfight that might have been going in her allies' favor, but will likely just get knocked out of the area (as it only makes champions immune to damage, not CC) or enemies will wait out the ability and simply kill Kindred as soon as it's over.
  • Violation of Common Sense:
    • Some champions fit a particular role or archetype but have playstyles that directly contradict some cardinal rules of playing the role. Graves is a ranged carry whose kit encourages him to get closer to his enemies, Singed is a fighter who does the most damage running away from enemies or even running circles around them, Karthus is a mage who can get away with intentionally dying so that he can cast his spells uninterrupted, etc. Doing this on most other champions of the same type is likely suicide.
    • Other champions get stronger as their health gets closer and closer to zero such as Olaf (or at least become more difficult to kill like Volibear). Most of these champions' potentials are wasted by doing the sensible thing and fleeing from losing situations; instead it may be smarter to fight it out and possibly come out on top.
  • Virtual Sidekick: The voiceover for the Pulsefire Ezreal skin includes a second character, PEARL, who acts as Ezreal's Mission Control, and occasionally setting up his jokes and catchphrases.
  • Walk It Off:
    • Everyone regenerates health naturally, but to varying degrees of usefulness. Mostly, sticking around with abysmally small amounts of health is suicidal at best and pointless at worst since you'll probably have to stay too far away from enemy minions to actually get experience and last hits.
    • Warmog's Armor will also fully heal you if you have at least 1100 bonus HP and stay out of combat for 8 seconds.
  • Weak Turret Gun: Double Subversion. Towers will kill low level champions in only a few hits, and to stay relevant at higher levels they deal additional damage for every consecutive shot they land on you. However, champions outscale them, and by the end of the game a champion can solo a tower without dying. There's also the art of "tower-diving"—pursuing a limping enemy into tower range and securing the kill before the tower can kill you—which, with experience, can be done before ten minutes have passed.
  • Weapons Kitchen Sink: Runeterra is such a diverse Fantasy Kitchen Sink with such varying technology levels and resource accessibility that nearly every conceptual weapon type is covered. Who gets what often has to do with the worldbuilding: places like The Freljord, Shurima, and Targon have lower tech, with its populous fighting with blunt objects (giant swords, clubs, halberds, even enchanted doors) or primitive firearms like bows and arrows, though Ionia coasts on having simpler, eastern-inspired weapons (katanas, ninja arsenals, and the like) with a large magical twist. More developed, militaristic nations like Demacia and Noxus wield weapons more suited for large-scale war, with ornate swords, spears, battleaxes, knives, and even a scattering of handguns and artillery. The sister cities of Piltover and Zaun (as well as the distant hub of piracy, Bilgewater) have access to the highest available tech in Runeterra, and is where you'll find the most guns, including shotguns, Sniper Rifles, rocket launchers, Attack Drones, as well as technologically-advanced melee options like giant Power Fists and scissor legs. This isn't even getting into all the various exceptions and twists thanks to the abundance of magic in the world, including Qiyana's elemental power-channeling ring blade or the various light-firing guns used by the Sentinels (including Senna's "Relic Cannon" that is in practice akin to a massive, light/dark-blasting railgun).
  • Wham Episode:
    • The 2014 Burning Tides event set up a massive status quo change for Bilgewater: Twisted Fate and Graves bury the hatchet! Miss Fortune seemingly kills Gangplank and successfully usurps his authority on Bilgewater! Gangplank survives his decimation, missing much of his power and an arm, but carving his way back!
    • Issue 4 of the Lux comic introduces another drastic change in the world, this time with Demacia: After Sylas' escape and formation of a rebellion, it ends up nearly succeeding! Jarvan IV is defeated in battle and set to be publicly executed, and Jarvan III — the king of Demacia — is dead under mysterious circumstances not even Sylas is aware of.
    • The final issue of Zed gives us a significant end with Zed, Shen, and Akali successfully defeating Jhin, but also throws a major twist in revealing who originally unleashed Jhin onto Ionia in the first place: Master Kusho, who was not only alive, but the ruthless true leader of the Order of Shadows and Navori Brotherhood. While Zed finally kills him for good, the loyalties of the Order are splintered and the number of those under Zed's rule greatly reduced, seemingly leaving only Kayn and a few others on his side.
      Zed: The Navori, the Kinkou, the rest of the Shadow CouncilNow we are against everyone.
      Kayn: Meh. Sounds like fun.
  • Wham Line: In Vi's colour story 'Child of Zaun' she's investigating a spider-themed cult forming in the Zaunite Sump that has even the chem barons afraid. After listening to the demagogue known as The Voice preaching about the coming of their savior, she asks her friend Roe who exactly it is that is coming. Roe answers "It's the Dreadnought."
  • Wham Shot: The final issue of the Zed comic ends up revealing the man who released and weaponized Jhin on Ionia: Master Kusho.
  • World War III: A sort of parallel in the pre-retcon lore — according to the August 3rd entry to the Journal of Justice, there were 5 horrific Rune Wars. To avoid another, where Real Life has the United Nations, pre-retcon Runeterra has the League of Legends.
  • World of Buxom: It would be shorter to try to list the non-Yordle humanoid adult females that aren't well-endowed.
  • You Kill It, You Bought It: Instead of randomly-spawning runes in DotA, there are certain creeps scattered about the map which give temporary Status Buffs in the form of the Red Buff and Blue Buff (Baron Nashor and the Elder Drake also give buffs, but aren't examples of this trope). If you get killed while having one, they pass to your killer as the timers reset, making dying while having one of them a very bad idea.


Video Example(s):



Master assassin Zed strikes from the shadows.

How well does it match the trope?

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Example of:

Main / MagnificentBastard

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