Riot Games’ League of Legends was first released back in 2009 and has gone on to become one of the most popular games in the world. The game has a strong active player base of over one hundred million players, has a thriving competitive scene which culminates every year in one of the most hyped tournaments in the entire Esports calendar, and LoL betting has even become a lucrative pursuit for its fans.
And despite being over a decade old at this point, 2020 has so far proven to just as successful for Riot and LoL fans as any other, with thirty million players signing in one day alone earlier this year. To help you get better acquainted with this remarkable Esport, we thought we would give the full lowdown on the classic maps currently present in League of Legends.
*League of Legends revolves entirely around the strategy of defending and destroying turret-like structures called Nexus. What gives the game an immense strategical feel is the fact that players cannot simply run up to a Nexus and start hacking away, they have to work their way through various obstacles in a certain order, and then choose whether they are going to destroy the Nexus by themselves, or command their legion of minions to do it for them.*
The oldest and still most played map in the entire game, there are five turrets in total across the map that players will have to destroy before they breach the enemy’s Nexus, the map’s three lanes house three turrets in addition to the two turrets guarding the Nexus. Each team’s side of the map has a Jungle section that allows players to enter via a number of routes and slay NPC enemies for gold, experience and certain buffs that come off the higher levelled foes.
Dropping the teams down from 5v5 on Summoner’s Rift to 3v3, Twisted Treeline is a two lane dark and gloomy map based around the Shadow Isles. With the map shrinking significantly and feeling much tighter to navigate around, Twisted Treeline is much more of a home to faster, more aggressive styles of play. There’s one Jungle located in the centre of the map which houses neutral NPC baddies, two altars at either end of the map for players to receive buffs and a unique villain named Vilemaw who players can fight if they make their way up to his lair. A map where bruisers always excel, taking on Vilemaw will also grant players a ten minute buff.
Having replaced the tutorial-like Proving Grounds following the release of the ARAM (All Random, All Mid) game mode, Howling Abyss currently stands as the only single laned map in classic right now. It is a terrifying ancient bridge that guards the entrance to the Frostguard Citadel, and has turrets dotted across its entire layout to act as defenders for each team’s Nexus, which get stronger the closer they sit together. Cooperation between summoners is arguably more important on this map than any other, with the single lane offering no place to hide for players that find themselves suddenly on their own and surrounded by enemy forces.
Once used as a way of safely introducing basic game mechanics and allowing players to flex their skills in a single location, this single laned approach to matchmaking has found a new home in the ARAM community and could one day prove to be a very viable form of competitive play.