Here is a very good introduction to LoL written by SatansFate with the help of Rilez, Daniellynet and iBoss of Facepunch.
What is League of Legends?
If you're familiar with WC3, and/or the DotA series that spawned from it (DotA, DotA: Allstars, HoN, etc.), here's an article to get you started: http://www.leagueofl...rn/dota_and_lol
For those not familiar with DotA, the gameplay of League of Legends can best be described as a session-based action RPG. The developers of LoL classify it in a new genre entirely, as a MOBA or “Multiplayer Online Battle Arena”. You start the game at level one, with a small amount of gold, and no items. As you play, you receive experience and gold. This allows you to level up and purchase items, which increases both the power of your champions abilities, as well as their core stats. The main goal of every match is to destroy the opposing team's "Nexus", a structure found at the heart of their base. To get there, you must first fight your way past hordes of computer controlled monsters, also known as minions, which continuously spawn from the enemy base. The base itself is protected by structures called turrets, which also must be destroyed. Whichever team destroys the other team's Nexus first, wins the game. It's truly a team oriented game, and you need to work together to succeed.
Why should I play League of Legends over DotA?
Automated matchmaking, to make finding a good game easy.
The ability to reconnect to games if you have disconnected.
Completely new and original playable champions.
Client-server network model, with no host advantage.
Advanced stat tracking.
Built-in surrender functionality.
A new in-game interface, with controls designed for this style of play.
Account-level progression, adding out-of-game strategic depth and customization, known as the summoner system. This includes Runes and Masteries.
Regular updates with many more features to come!
An improved mini-map that shows your champion's pathing.
Multiple maps, (Summoner's Rift, Summoner's Rift: Winter, Twisted Treeline, The Proving Grounds, Magma Chamber coming soon.)
Features that make teaching the game to your friends easier, (game tutorial, bots, suggested items)
Did I mention the game is [highlight]completely FREE?[/highlight]
Yeah, that's right. You can play League of Legends without paying a single cent.
You are allowed the use of two Summoner Spells in any match of League of Legends. You can choose from a large variety prior to the start of a game. They are all unique, and can easily alter the game in your favor if you use them correctly.
You can put up to 30 points, which are gained upon leveling up, into three categories of masteries - offense, defense, and utility. Some of the more advanced masteries require investment in lesser masteries. Summoner masteries are not set in stone; depending on the champion that you want to play, they may be changed to better suit your needs. You can even set them while selecting your champion before a match begins, so if your favorite champion is taken, you can change your masteries to better suit another.
Before queuing for a match, you can make use of "Runes" to increase your champion's power. There are four types of Runes that you can use: glyphs, marks, seals, and quintessences. Before a match begins, you can choose from one of up to nine different rune configurations you have previously set in your Runebook. This allows for maximum flexibility in choosing a Runebook that is best suited for whatever champion end up using. You CANNOT change these while selecting your champion, so choose wisely before entering the queue. Even if you are unsure of how you want to build your champion, you should always select a rune page before entering the game. Runes can only benefit your character, and are never detrimental.
Here is the official list of all the champions in the game:
Every champion has a role to play. Here's the general archetypes of champions found within the game:
Assassins : These champions specialize in taking out other champions. They are usually pretty frail, but make up for this in increased mobility with blinks, teleports, jumps, and even stealth abilities. These champions (a la their namesake) get into the action, burst down an enemy, and walk right out.
Tanks : They have the most health, the most armor, and the most magic resistance. These are the champions that initiate team fights and soak all the damage. They don't generally get as many kills as other champions, but they are great at getting assists. Some of them can force champions into attacking them, some of them can stun, while others have forms of "crowd control" that affect the entire enemy team.
Fighters : These champions deal damage per second, or DPS. They rely on armor penetration, attack damage, and attack speed to get the job done. Some of them are tougher than others, and some of them have abilities which augment their attack speed, their attack damage, or even their movement speed.
Mages : Mages are capable of extreme burst damage, and rely heavily on items that give them bonus magic penetration and ability power. Most of them are out of luck when their abilities are on cooldown.
Support : These are the champions that support the team. They save the lives of their team mates, whilst simultaneously making life a living hell for the other team. They don't get many kills, but they do win games.
Q: Is it difficult to unlock champions?
Not really. For one thing, Riot selects ten new champions every week. For that week, the champions they selected are free to play. However, if you want to purchase a champion forever, you can use the Influence Points you earn while playing the game. Champions cost various amounts of I.P, from 450 I.P all the way up to 6300 I.P. Winning a game, on average, nets you a bit more than 100 I.P. If it's your first win of the day, it's usually around 250 I.P. Losing games even nets you around 70 I.P. The free champions give you a taste, whilst I.P is primarily used to unlock the champions you really liked when they were free.
If you're lazy, you can also buy Riot Points with real money to unlock champions. Riot Points are also used to buy champion skins; you can't use I.P to buy those (that's how they make money and keep the game free). Riot is firm about "buying power", however, and you cannot buy runes with Riot Points.
Q: My friend and I want to play in the same game. Can we?
Of course! If you're new, you might want to stick with the practice mode before you move onto the normal or ranked mode. People in the normal and ranked modes know what they are doing, especially the players in the ranked mode. You and your friend can practice against bots and get a feel of the game itself in practice mode.
Q: I'm amazing at DotA and everything else DotA related, why should I bother?
LoL has had several competitive tournaments in the past. There are more coming up, so if you're seriously good and want to make some cash and win prizes, you can.
Q: How do I sign up?
Signing up is free. I'm going to give you two options, though. I would very much appreciate you signing up through my referral link. if you could give me a referral. Signing up with my link does benefit me in the end, but you don't have to use my link if you don't want to! Keep in mind, I only get credited if your account reaches level five. If you do sign-up with my link, and you like the game; please keep playing!
Click here to sign up using my referral.
Q: I'm signed up. Now what?
Start off with the tutorial! It will teach you the basic controls, game play mechanics, and the objectives of the game.
Once you have a good handle on that, start a practice game and add bots. Practice mode allows you to explore the map and try out new champion,s without having to worry about playing well. The Bots aren't very difficult to beat, so don't expect them to be on par with actual players.
If you can handle the bots, and feel like you have a good handle on the game itself, try a practice game with actual players. Look in the lobby for games called "new players only" or "levels 1-5", etc.
Look up character guides on the official forum and on Leaguecraft.
When you feel like you're ready, join a Normal Game with solo queue. Don't get owned!
http://www.leagueoflegends.com/ - The main website.
http://leagueoflegen...of_Legends_Wiki - Wiki-style website for LoL, lots of useful articles here.
http://www.leagueoflegends.com/board/ - Official forums.
http://www.leagueofl...isplay.php?f=16 - Beginners guides to specific champions.
http://www.leaguecraft.com/ - Huge LoL database, also has a ton of great champion builds.
http://lolhu.wordpress.com/ - A blog about LoL. Generally has leaked info about new champions and items.
Here is the Season 1 Trailer. Dispite RIOT saying they will release a new trailer, they have been more concerned with producing ingame content.
Here is something to help the newer players decide what character to play. Taken from a post on Team Liquid and updated by me.
Sals Name/LoL Name/Mains/Level/Server
So yeah, League of Legends everyone.
Thanks to The Prodigy for some of the banners!