League of Legends
Celebrating 14 Years of League of Legends

Celebrating 14 Years of League of Legends

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Developed and published by Riot Games, League of Legends (LoL) was released on Oct. 27, 2009 as a free-to-play Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA) title for PC. It was inspired by the Warcraft III map Defense of the Ancients (Dota), and the developer wanted to create a standalone MOBA experience. It’s safe to say they delivered more than anyone could ever have hoped for.

On Oct. 27, 2023, League of Legends turns 14 and over the years, it has seen tremendous success. Join us as we celebrate one of the biggest, most popular video games, with millions of daily players. We’ll discuss the history of the LoL World Championships, how Riot has updated the game, the release of numerous Champions, and what the future holds.

At Thunderpick, you can check out all the latest LoL odds from tournaments around the globe.

History of LoL World Championships

The LoL World Championship, often abbreviated as “Worlds,” is the annual crowning event hosted by Riot Games. In front of a roaring crowd, the best teams from each region compete for their share of a massive prize pool and the honor of lifting the Summoner’s Cup. The electrifying esports action of Worlds events sees the best casters in the business offer play-by-play commentary as fans across the globe watch in the millions, shattering viewership records nearly every year. 

Worlds events are, without a doubt, the pinnacle of League of Legends esports. Let’s reminisce about the previous Worlds tournaments, reminding ourselves how far this annual event has come.

You’ll find a list of all 12 LoL Worlds events below, including their location, prize pools, number of teams, winners, and runners-up.

Worlds EventLocationPrize PoolTeamsWinnerRunner-up
Riot Season 1 ChampionshipJönköping, Sweden$98,5008FnaticaAa
Riot Season 2 ChampionshipLos Angeles, California$2 million12Taipei AssassinsAzubu Frost
Riot Season 3 ChampionshipLos Angeles, California$2.05 million14SK Telecom T1Royal Club
Worlds 2014Seoul, South Korea$2.13 million16Samsung WhiteStar Horn Royal Club
Worlds 2015Berlin, Germany$2.13 million16SK Telecom T1KOO Tigers
Worlds 2016Los Angeles, California$5.07 million16SK Telecom T1Samsung Galaxy
Worlds 2017Beijing, China$4.6 million24Samsung GalaxySK Telecom T1
Worlds 2018Incheon, South Korea$6.45 million24Invictus GamingFnatic
Worlds 2019Paris, France$2.225 million24FunPlus PhoenixG2 Esports
Worlds 2020Shanghai, China$2.225 million22DAMWON GamingSuning
Worlds 2021Reykjavík, Iceland$2.225 million22EDward GamingDAMWON Gaming
Worlds 2022San Francisco, California$2.225 million24DRXT1

Please note: The location of the LoL Worlds events reflects where the finals were played. World Championship events have had different areas per stage since Worlds 2014.

Worlds 2023 will run from Oct. 10 to Nov. 19 at multiple locations in South Korea, ending with the grand final at the Gocheok Sky Dome on Nov. 19, 2023. Teams will compete for their share of the $2.23 million prize and the glory of lifting the Summoner’s Cup. 

The second-most important annual League of Legends esports event is the Mid-Season Invitational (MSI), which began in 2015. There have been eight MSI events so far; the 2020 version was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hundreds of LoL Updates

No matter what role you play in League of Legends or who your favorite Champions are, there are likely times that you’ve been angry at Riot Games after balance changes. Or, you’ve screamed from the virtual rooftops of social media how brilliant the latest update is.

League of Legends has seen hundreds of big and small updates in the past 14 years. Riot Games isn’t afraid to experiment and make sweeping changes, but the team also considers player feedback.

A good example is patch 12.1, where Riot nerfed the widely-used Summoner Spell. It allowed players to teleport to allied turrets before the spell gets upgraded to Unleashed Teleport at the 14-minute mark. This change affected competitive play in a big way, and the devs listened to community feedback, shortening the upgrade time to 10 minutes.

Summoner’s Rift, the LoL map used in esports competitions, has seen many changes, too. Some have gone down well with the fanbase, while others have not. The latest big content update is entitled “Soul Fighter,” and it included the following content:

  • New game mode: Arena
  • Champion Launch: Naafiri, the Hound of a Hundred Bites
  • Skins: Soul Fighter Samira (Ultimate), Viego (Legendary), Soul Fighter Naafiri, Soul Fighter Shaco, Soul Fighter Pyke, Soul Fighter Sett, Soul Fighter Lux, Soul Fighter Jhin, Soul Fighter Gwen and Soul Fighter Evelynn, Prestige Soul Fighter Shaco, and Prestige Soul Fighter Pyke.
  • Soul Fighter 2023 Pass
  • In-Client Metagame Experience: Tournament of Souls (LoL Exclusive)

You can stay up-to-date with the latest League of Legends changes and additions via Riot Games’ official patch notes section.

History of Champion Releases

At launch, Riot Games planned to feature 20 Champions. However, this number nearly doubled throughout the development process and alpha testing. On Oct. 27, 2009, League of Legends officially released the following champions:

  • Ashe
  • Alistar
  • Annie
  • Fiddlesticks
  • Jax
  • Kayle
  • Master Yi
  • Morgana
  • Nunu
  • Ryze
  • Sion
  • Sivir
  • Soraka
  • Teemo
  • Tristana
  • Twisted Fate
  • Warwick
  • Singed
  • Zilean
  • Evelynn
  • Tryndamere
  • Twitch
  • Karthus
  • Amumu
  • Cho’Gath
  • Anivia
  • Rammus
  • Veigar
  • Kassadin
  • Gangplank
  • Taric
  • Blitzcrank
  • Dr. Mundo
  • Janna
  • Malphite
  • Corki
  • Katarina
  • Nasus
  • Heimerdinger
  • Shaco

Riot Games released Udyr and Nidalee shortly after the launch of LoL in December 2009. Throughout the years, League of Legends has grown its Champion roster to over 160. You’ll find a list of Champions released each year below.

LoL Champions Released in 2010

  • Poppy
  • Gragas
  • Pantheon
  • Mordekaiser
  • Ezreal
  • Shen
  • Kennen
  • Garen
  • Akali
  • Malzahar
  • Olaf
  • Kog’Maw
  • Xin Zhao
  • Vladimir
  • Galio
  • Urgot
  • Miss Fortune
  • Sona
  • Swain
  • Lux
  • LeBlanc
  • Irelia
  • Trundle
  • Cassiopeia

LoL Champions Released in 2011

  • Caitlyn
  • Renekton
  • Karma
  • Maokai
  • Jarvan IV
  • Nocturne
  • Lee Sin
  • Brand
  • Rumble
  • Vayne
  • Orianna
  • Yorick
  • Leona
  • Wukong
  • Skarner
  • Talon
  • Riven
  • Xerath
  • Graves
  • Shyvana
  • Fizz
  • Volibear
  • Ahri
  • Viktor

LoL Champions Released in 2012

  • Sejuani
  • Ziggs
  • Nautilus
  • Fiora
  • Lulu
  • Hecarim
  • Varus
  • Darius
  • Draven
  • Jayce
  • Zyra
  • Diana
  • Rengar
  • Syndra
  • Kha’Zix
  • Elise
  • Zed
  • Nami
  • Vi

LoL Champions Released in 2013

  • Thresh
  • Quinn
  • Zac
  • Lissandra
  • Aatrox
  • Lucian
  • Jinx
  • Yasuo

LoL Champions Released in 2014

  • Vel’Koz
  • Braum
  • Gnar
  • Azir
  • Kalista
  • Rek’Sai

LoL Champions Released in 2015

  • Bard
  • Ekko
  • Tahm Kench
  • Kindred
  • Illaoi

LoL Champions Released in 2016

  • Jhin
  • Aurelion Sol
  • Taliyah
  • Kled
  • Ivern
  • Camille

LoL Champions Released in 2017

  • Rakan
  • Xayah
  • Kayn
  • Ornn
  • Zoe

LoL Champions Released in 2018

  • Kai’Sa
  • Pyke
  • Neeko

LoL Champions Released in 2019

  • Sylas
  • Yuumi
  • Qiyana
  • Senna
  • Aphelios

LoL Champions Released in 2020

  • Sett
  • Lillia
  • Yone
  • Samira
  • Seraphine
  • Rell

LoL Champions Released in 2021

  • Viego
  • Gwen
  • Akshan
  • Vex

LoL Champions Released in 2022

  • Zeri
  • Renata Glasc
  • Bel’Veth
  • Nilah
  • K’Sante

LoL Champions Released in 2023

  • Milio
  • Naafiri

Each Champion has unique abilities, playstyle, and lore, going as deep as regional conflicts and storied histories. For example, the Champion Darius exclaims, “Noxus will rise,” signifying the empire’s return to power.

Still with us? There’s more to come!

The Future of League

The future of LoL is bright as Riot Games continues to iterate gameplay systems, make balance changes to Champions that shift the meta, release new content, and take community feedback to heart. It is still among the most popular esports titles, even after 14 years, thanks to its massive, passionate fanbase.

While the number of new League of Legends characters has decreased over the years, we can look forward to the release of Briar, who’s expected to join the game on Wednesday, Sept. 27, with Patch 13.19. Riot is also planning to release a visual update for Jax and a rework for Skarner.

At Thunderpick, you can bet on League of Legends esports action with a number of cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Dogecoin. Are you new to esports betting? Check out our beginner’s League of Legends betting guide to learn more.

Written byTHP

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