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Legends of Runeterra: Everything we know

Our rundown of how Legends of Runeterra, Riot's new card game, will work.

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About James Law

James can usually be found wearing dungarees, playing Hearthstone, drinking coffee, or all of the above. For his sins, he has been cursed to forever main heavies in Smash.

Riot Games announced their upcoming Collectable Card Game - here’s what we know so far.

Legends of Runeterra was officially unveiled at Riot's Tenth Anniversary Celebration, and has got card game fans excited. Ahead of Legends of Runeterra's 2020 release, we've put together a general guide for what to expect.

What is Legends of Runeterra?

Officially announced at the League of Legends Anniversary Celebration with the early beta launched immediately after, Legends of Runeterra is a new free-to-play collectable card game which has been described as a cross between the game systems of Hearthstone and the creature combat of Magic: The Gathering.

Each turn, players switch between offensive and defensive modes, with the defender getting the chance to use units previously played to protect themself from damage coming from the units selected to attack by the enemy. In a similar vein to most other CCGs, the gameplay is simple to learn but hides a great deal of depth beneath the surface.

Each deck you build contains 40 cards, with a maximum of 3 of each card per deck, and they can only contain cards from two out of the six ‘regions’: Demacia, Freljord, Ionia, Noxus, Piltover & Zaun, and the Shadow Isles. All manner of keywords impact the game in a variety of unique ways, from Lucian’s Quick Attack ability to Garen’s Regeneration. Speaking of League of Legends Champions, they’re some of the strongest cards in the game, with the opportunity to level up if certain conditions are met. If Braum survives 10 total damage or if Fiora kills 2 enemies, they become more powerful versions of themselves. You’re allowed up to six Champions per deck though, so they’re valuable resources that can change the game.

Champions bring special spells known as Champion Spells, which can be drawn when the corresponding Champion is already in play. For example, Fiora’s Riposte gives an ally +3/+0 and Barrier, whilst shuffling a Fiora back into your deck.

If you’re looking to go a bit more in-depth, popular streamer Trump put together a handy video playing a game against the AI to give a bit more detail.

How often will Legends of Runeterra expansions come out?

According to a Reddit AMA undertaken by the game's dev team, expansions are expected to be released every 4 months, so 3 times a year. We'll also be getting monthly balance patches to keep the game's meta as enjoyable as possible, and the team is looking into the possibility of adding new cards in the downtime between sets, just as Hearthstone has done recently.

It was confirmed that new Regions would be added to the game in the future too, but there aren't any plans to add in any 'neutral' cards or cards without a Region.

How will Legends of Runeterra take my money?

Cards can be created through the ‘wildcard’ system. There are four rarities of card: Common, Rare, Epic and Champion, and wildcards can be made into a card of its corresponding rarity. You earn wildcards through natural gameplay, but also through gaining card duplicates giving you ‘shards’ which can be transformed into wildcards in a similar fashion to Hearthstone’s arcane dust. Of course, real money can be spent to purchase Coins to fill out your collection too.

You'll actually be limited in how much you can spend on cards. Instead, there are chests that give you cards each week, with higher chances for good loot at higher levels. More information is due to be released soon, with a whole article from the developers on how card acquisition will work in LoR.

If you do purchase coins during the Preview Patches, they'll be returned to you upon the game's release, when everyone's collections will be reset. So, if you spent 500 coins on wildcards, those coins will be put back into your account so you can spend them again.

We've put together a comprehensive progression guide, so if you're after a bit more information on card unlocks and the like, that's a great place to start.

What are the specs for Legends of Runeterra?

Here are the minimum requirements for the game as announced by Riot.

Windows:

  • 64-bit Windows 7, 8.1 or 10
  • 3 GHz processor
  • 4 GB RAM
  • GPU with 512MB+ VRAM

Mac OS:

Not Supported.

Mobile

Specs unknown at present.

That's all we got for now - check out Riot's Q&A about Legends of Runeterra for more information though. We'll be keeping tabs on the game in the run-up to its release!

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