Monday, September 6, 2010

league of legends

Part of the reasons I've been neglecting this blog is that I just recently started playing a free-to-play DotA-clone called League of Legends. My sleep deprivation due to compulsive gaming also reached its peak in a while... going to bed routinely at 2:30 AM sucks, but I can't help it!

After cancelling my WoW account while waiting for Cataclysm (as much as I like Blizzard, paying them $15/month for ZERO content seemed too much like a waste) I decided I needed a new game, and, never having played Defense of the Ancients before, I was rather curious about how 5x5 real-time strategy PvP worked. My favourite games are turn-based strategy games, but I played a lot of single-player Warcraft 2 as a kid and I recall greatly enjoying it. I skipped Starcraft and Warcraft 3 due to my Final Fantasy fanboy phase (just like every RPG nerd), so my RTS experiences were really outdated. LoL's colourful design and free-to-playness lured me in.

LoL is like crack cocaine. Shit is addicting and hazardous to your health. Basically, there is a wide variety of Champions (characters you control) ingame, over 50 of them ranging from handsome greatsword-wielding soldiers to pyromaniac 10-year-old girls, including barbarians, demons, ninjas, a pirate, a female Articuno, a robot very reminiscent of Chrono Trigger and an adorable emo mummy kid! All of them are very distinct from each other, but only 10 of them are playable for free each week: the free-to-play roster rotates every Monday and if you want to have permanent access to a character, you must unlock them by paying either RL cash or "Influence Points" (which is earned as a reward at the end of each match). Otherwise you are forced to choose from among the 10 free champions, which isn't as bad as it might seem, since they usually choose a fair spread among tanks, melee DPS, mages and support characters.

LoL is also very competitive, as expected from a PvP game, so the community isn't that friendly once you gain levels and start playing against non-newbies. Nothing unbearable though; I've met a bunch of jerks, but most of the time it's fine. I compare "Normal" games to Battlegrounds (there are "Rated" games later on, comparable to WoW arenas, with an ELO rating and all that) - it's thrilling as PvP usually is but very laid-back and casual at the same time. Rated matches and their ELO rating surely must be very rage-inducing, I'm not certain I'll ever play ranked. The biggest complain seems to revolve around, as in every free-to-play online game, Brazilians. Everyone hates Brazilians in there. Thankfully they have no way to detect your nationality. Nobody I've played with or against knew I'm Brazilian, so thankfully I haven't been harassed due to my unfortunate place of birth.

I main Garen, the hunky soldier guy, but since lately people have been raping my newbie ass - especially casters like the fallen angel Morgana (personally I would prefer being raped by barbarian king Tryndamere, or spartan soldier Pantheon), I've moved on to Amumu, the cute-but-sad mummy kid (who's a frigging tank - awesome!), and I'm having a blast. Great game!

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