Why I don't play League of Legends: gameplay
I've heard tons of people praise League of Legends for its gameplay. They love the characters. They love the style. Sometimes it's just them liking MOBAs.
However, I think it's overrated; I think the gameplay is poorly done.
I don't understand how 3 million people tuned in to watch the competition. I know this is based upon what somewhat does and does not like in a game, but let's be honest, the gameplay is the exact same thing over and over again. A character may change. The player may use some different moves. Overall though, you're going to be killing minions, other players, and destroying the towers and the opponents' Nexus.
Something interesting or funny may happen every once in a while, but you can look that up on YouTube, stream it instantly to your computer, and not have to worry about waiting around for hours for that interesting thing to may or may not happen. For example:
There are eleven enemy towers you are supposed to destroy before taking down the enemy Nexus. All of them have the same abilities and health. The towers in front of the Nexus shoot out some lasers, and the rest shoot out what look to be fireballs. There's little variation to them. Couldn't there be some lightning strikes or ice based attacks as well? Most champions' specials do no damage against them, so your champions will use the same attack over and over again too.
Since they do not randomly spawn, you know exactly where they will be. You can just run up, hopefully avoid enemy champions, and deal some damage while your minions are backing you. There's no element of surprise to them whatsoever.
You also have to kill eleven of them. Tell me that's not at least a little tedious. Sure they're guarded by other champions and some minions, but minions don't pose much of a threat. Once the champions are defeated, that tower is free game. Besides, you're fighting enemy champions throughout the entirety of the game. That's the point. Fighting them here, again, doesn't seem all that scary or new.
Imagine this happened in a shooter or an RPG for instance. You're going through the story and all of a sudden, the narrator tells you have to destroy 11 towers guarded by the same champions and the same couple of minions. The first three or four are fun. Five through eight are okay. Nine, ten, and eleven make you want to kill yourself. It gets boring quickly with the same enemies and nothing new to spice up each tower.
Just fighting other champions
There are five other champions to help you out with destroying towers, but that just makes it feel so short. That would be a little less than two towers per person and an enemy nexus split six ways. There're the Baron and the dragon, but they spawn about twice per game. That isn't much to do, so the bulk of the gameplay is spent killing opponent champions and minions.
The bulk of the gameplay is spent killing opponent champions and minions.
Considering how fast the towers and Nexus goes down, you're REALLY spending a lot of time on enemy opponents.
Let's put this in comparison. You're playing a shooter, and you're fighting the same six enemies over and over again. Sure they're rather tough, but it starts to get boring after a while, and you really want some new things to kill. Some grunts get thrown into the mix, but they're so easy to kill that you don't pay them any attention. This goes on for the rest of the game. You complain, but nothing can be done about it. When you finally complete that final objective of getting the opponents' base at the end, the game ends, and you have the option of doing that same thing again, so you do. Are you having fun yet?
The Nexus just sits there, guarded by towers. Like the towers, they're all exactly the same thing. They can't attack. They don't randomly spawn. They're just there where they were in the previous game and the game before that and the game before that. The only thing that changes about them is the champions who are guarding them and attacking them, and that is dependent upon the player.
I think it would be much more interesting if the Nexus could at least switch places every once and a while. Put in the corner guarded by towers instead of just right out in the middle. It may take a little reworking on the map, but I'm getting to that.
Most people play on Summoner's Rift. That's fine. I don't care what your map preference is, but the map is the same simple format over and over again. You spawn on either the top or bottom. There're some towers. There's some of the jungle and then there's a stream going across the middle of the map. The towers don't even switch sides; that very first tower on the right in mid lane will never be on the left. Each map is completely set in stone.
If the towers at least swapped sides every now and then it would add a new variety to the game that would keep players on their toes. The whole map doesn't have to change each time (that would be ridiculous), but at least small things. Even if a shooter where levels are similar and enemies are the same basic drone, things change. Enemies will spawn from the same location, but they will move differently based upon how you move. Depending upon the game, some enemies will even have different weapons or abilities.
Something as simple as having the Baron spawn in a slightly different location each time or the towers shifting position would add a whole new layer of gameplay that would be awesome and really make players have to watch everything that goes on around them instead of just enemy champions.
Your minions spawn at the beginning of the game to help you out. They can be very helpful, but they prove to be just as repetitive as the rest of things that spawn. They follow the same paths. They spawn from the same locations.
Imagine if, instead of going down mid lane, bot lane, and top lane, they all went for mid lane? That would really throw players for a loop and cause a bit of a challenge for top and bot. Mid lane would probably be really happy too. Imagine if they could spawn in from the middle of the map. Is that the most practical? No, but it would be an interesting twist nonetheless.
This is a battle after all!
Considering that these are all champions thrown together into battle, you might expect the scenario to be a little different each time around. If you were to go back to ancient Rome and enter into the Coliseum, the lions (enemy champions) wouldn't attack you the same way each time. The other gladiators (the minions) would vary their attacks and move about differently. If you were allowed to fight with weapons, each weapon wouldn't be the exact same one over and over again. The enemies' weapons wouldn't be the exact same one over and over again (different designs, sharpness, length, etc). If you were given a chariot, it wouldn't spawn in the exact same location all the time either.
In League of Legends, a game that is centered around a battle throwing champions together to fight and take down the opponents' base, it makes sense for things to happen a little differently each time. In war, nothing is ever exactly the same. It evolves; the players evolves. Even in a real life game like football, plays change slightly.
Just look left (they're similar plays, but different enough to make the game interesting). It throws your opponent off guard and makes it more challenging. It's not meant to be the same. Besides, planting everything in the exact same spot every time is just stupid. You're asking to be killed at that point. It's a bad strategy.
Not for casual gamers...
People have told me that League of Legends is not for casual gamers and I would have to agree. Currently, there are 126 champions. After spending countless hours getting enough Riot Points or Influence Points to unlock each champion, you have to play with each champion to figure out which ones works well for you. That takes forever by itself.
After going through all that nonsense, you now have a champion, or champions, that you like to use. Now you have to jump in and perfect those champions. You now get to figure out exactly what works on that champion and what doesn’t. Figure out what items you’re going to equip, what items you aren’t going to equip, and which attacks are best. You figure out the beginning game, mid game, and end game.
Then, you can actually play the game for real. Maybe it’s just me, but that’s ridiculously tedious, even for hardcore gamers, and I’m not taking into account the fact that Riot continuously releases new champions to go through and unlock as well (Ekko). I’m honestly not sure why people would invest so much time into the game for that. Such a system is plain annoying.
However, this system is also very limited. It pushes out casual gamers. Smite has proven that MOBAs can work with a simple system that allows casual gamers, so why does League of Legends have to have one so difficult? I understand that, at this point, Riot is not going to redo their system entirely for casual gamers, but wouldn't it be possible to make it somewhat simpler?
Admittedly, League of Legends has a cool concept. If it weren't for the endless repetition, I would probably play it every once and a while. I just don't want to waste my time with gameplay that's repetitive and fixed. I would much rather spend my time with a shooter or RPG, or whatever other genre I'm currently into with enemies that surprise me and more variety than those same couple of enemies on a small map.
Keep in mind that this is my opinion when it comes to the gameplay of League of Legends. You could love the gameplay with all your heart and get maximum enjoyment out of it, but I don't and wished to highlight some of the reasons why I don't like it as much.
Let me know why you do or don't like the gameplay of League in the comments below.