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League Of Legends Performance, Benchmarked
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Developed from the ground-up by Riot Games, LoL uses a proprietary game engine intended to facilitate maximum compatibility with a wide range of PC hardware. Instead of getting majorly overhauled, the engine receives small patches to continually improve it. While we've watched visual quality get better since the original release back in 2010, though, it'd be hard to pinpoint the exact changes without side-by-side screenshots. The art style is very similar to the game's spiritual roots in World Of Warcraft III: Reign Of Chaos. The Blizzard influence is obvious, although LoL has more of a cartoonish edge to its models and characters.

Detail settings are controlled by four switches: Character Quality, Effects Quality, Environment Quality, and Shadows. Each of these have five levels of detail: Very Low, Low, Medium, High, and Very High. Since the game tends to be so easy on hardware, we're keeping everything maxed out for our benchmarks except for the Shadows setting, which has the most dramatic effect on frame rates. 

For comparison, we captured the difference between each setting below:

Frankly, the difference between the High and Very High Shadows settings are very subtle. Low sticks you with blocky shadows, though they only seem to affect characters, and not the environment. Those bottom-end settings are here for your information only; we didn't find them necessary to use since our most entry-level components were able to handle quite a bit more.

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  • 10 Hide
    Martell1977 , May 19, 2013 10:14 PM
    No surprises here, LoL is a very resource light game. I can run it on all medium settings on my old Pentium 4 3.2ghz with a AGP Radeon 3850 @ 1440x900 resolution with more than playable frame rates. The only issue is initial stutter at at the very start of a match that and long loading times. (however, I only use that machine when I have 3 or more players at my house)

    LoL may not be the prettiest game out there, but it is a lot of fun.
Other Comments
  • 2 Hide
    Zero_ , May 19, 2013 9:24 PM
    Looks like everyone is jobless these days...

    Also, no love for Heroes of Newerth?
  • 10 Hide
    Martell1977 , May 19, 2013 10:14 PM
    No surprises here, LoL is a very resource light game. I can run it on all medium settings on my old Pentium 4 3.2ghz with a AGP Radeon 3850 @ 1440x900 resolution with more than playable frame rates. The only issue is initial stutter at at the very start of a match that and long loading times. (however, I only use that machine when I have 3 or more players at my house)

    LoL may not be the prettiest game out there, but it is a lot of fun.
  • -1 Hide
    amuffin , May 19, 2013 10:36 PM
    Ezreal 2 good.
  • 1 Hide
    Novuake , May 19, 2013 10:38 PM
    Interesting side note : When I was trying this on my HD4000 instead of my HD7950, when the drops under 50FPS become a HUGE hindrance in teamfights, to the point of extreme frustration.

    This is one of those games when the smallest stutter can grind your bones to dust.

    So you REALLY want a near-constant 60FPS for this one.

    Anypony disagree???
  • -5 Hide
    JJ1217 , May 19, 2013 10:55 PM
    Yeah.. no one cares. Everyone knows you can basically run it on any rig.
  • 0 Hide
    griptwister , May 19, 2013 11:03 PM
    I ran it on Ultra settings at 1080P with a Phenom II x4 840 and a GTS 450 512mb with a stable 60FPS. lol, it's not that hard to run at all.
  • 2 Hide
    aggroboy , May 19, 2013 11:09 PM
    When working in out-of-town projects, the few games my ultralight can play are indies, emulators and LoL.
  • 3 Hide
    rdc85 , May 19, 2013 11:14 PM
    "...though the GeForce 210 does exceed 15 ms in our subsequent frame latency variance chart..."

    U got the chart wrong? is the 210 and 6450 swiched ?

    [EDITOR: Yes, we got it mixed up. Thanks for the note, fixed! - Don]
  • 2 Hide
    anxiousinfusion , May 19, 2013 11:17 PM
    JJ1217Yeah.. no one cares. Everyone knows you can basically run it on any rig.


    It would have been more interesting to see it tested on the oldest possible computers.
  • 0 Hide
    jdwii , May 19, 2013 11:23 PM
    Why wait this long to review this game? At least half the people at my college play this game,
  • 2 Hide
    Steelwing , May 19, 2013 11:29 PM
    They should have also run benchmarks on the new Howling Abyss map. It seems to be much more detailed, and some people have reported FPS problems with it.
  • 2 Hide
    Memnarchon , May 20, 2013 12:52 AM
    Thanks. As I see we can go as low as possible in order to create a pc that is able to play LOL.
  • 2 Hide
    richboyliang , May 20, 2013 1:10 AM
    i don't have any of the graphics cards used...my intel hd 3000 gets about 45 fps except when karthus ults (7 fps)
  • 2 Hide
    tomate2 , May 20, 2013 1:37 AM
    LoL has a lot of players and im sure many of them would benefit from this article :) 
  • 4 Hide
    SuperVeloce , May 20, 2013 2:31 AM
    well thanks, my brother cannot say "i need a new computer for Lol" anymore. xD
  • 1 Hide
    kettu , May 20, 2013 3:49 AM
    Page 4 title says 'low details' but the graph says 'highest detail'.

    I suppose this time CPU latency numbers don't matter that much since it's such a light load. But I still want to take this opportunity to ask for them in the future articles when there is a heavier load and differences between FPS scores.

    By the way, interesting how the iGPUs perform against faster Radeon cards in latency measurements. Would you add the desktop chips for the next review alongside the mobile?
  • 0 Hide
    Memnarchon , May 20, 2013 5:27 AM
    Just one question. Since the GT 630 seems to be an excellent choice with such low frame rates at high settings @ 1080p, what kind of memory had your sample? Was DDR3 or GDDR5? I just foud the answer that is GDDR5, which is 40% more expensive here (DDR3 = 50 euro, GDDR5 = 70 euro). :/ 
  • -4 Hide
    Grandmastersexsay , May 20, 2013 6:00 AM
    This is the most popular game in the world right now? I don't get it.

    Shame on all of you for supporting the pay to win model. You are going to ruin gaming, and your bank accounts.

  • 0 Hide
    chugot9218 , May 20, 2013 6:06 AM
    For the record, credit usually goes to DOTA for being the first MOBA, but it was more or less based on Aeon of Strife which was a custom map for the first Starcraft.
  • 1 Hide
    lewo , May 20, 2013 6:56 AM
    can you also make a benchmark for HON (Heroes of Newerth) ?
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