Vi from Arcane after her release from prison.

How Many People Are Still Playing ‘League of Legends’?

Believe it or not, League of Legends is 15 years old this year. Even more incredible, its popularity hasn’t dwindled, even for a bit, since its 2009 launch.

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Riot has been aggressively marketing its games in recent years by expanding through other media like movies and music, and many of its game characters have been at the core of these promotions. Some newer players have been enticed into playing the game because of Heartsteel and K/DA, while others found their way to it through Arcane. As it stands, there are 141,098,190 people actively playing League of Legends as of January 2024.

In November 2021, the month Arcane was released, League of Legends had an average of 150,367,739 players during that month. There may be other factors involved, but the number of active players has seen an increase since November 2021 to March 2022.

Heartsteel, the virtual boyband of Riot Games, didn’t seem to have a significant impact on League of Legends despite its aggressive promotion. K/DA, the virtual girl group by Riot, became popular through 2018–2020. League of Legends also became increasingly popular from 2018 to 2020. There was a sharp rise from having roughly 75,000,000 average active players in 2018 to more than 115,000,000 average active players in 2020.

Arcane’s second season will be released sometime in 2024, and we might see another resurgence in popularity for League of Legends once the series drops. (Now if only that popularity could stop Riot from enacting massive layoffs.)

(featured image: Netflix)


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Vanessa Esguerra
Vanessa Esguerra (She/They) is a Contributing Writer for The Mary Sue. She graduated with a degree in Bachelor of Arts in Political Economy and is currently pursuing her Master's Degree in Japanese Studies. She speaks three languages, but still manages to get lost in the subways of Tokyo with her clunky Japanese. As a mixed race bisexual woman, she frequently writes about race, gender and sexuality both academically and professionally. Fueled by iced coffee brewed from local cafés in Metro Manila, she also regularly covers anime and video games while queuing for her next match in League of Legends.