League of Legends was released on October 27, 2009. Yet despite being over a decade old, it has become one of the most popular games on the planet. Recent statistics suggest there are approximately 115 million monthly League of Legends players.

The appeal of the game is easy to see. It’s one of the most polished MOBA games around, features fast-paced and exciting gameplay, offers epic skins, and is undoubtedly addicting. However, these points alone cannot account for its incredible combination of longevity and prevalence.

For a greater explanation, here are five reasons why LoL is still massively popular.

1. Free to play

More and more video games have adopted the free-to-play model. This includes the likes of Fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzone, and Rocket League; however, League of Legends has been free ever since its launch in 2009.

Due to not costing a penny to play, this has encouraged many to try the game. Plus, unlike other titles that keep many features locked behind a paywall, nearly everything – barring some cosmetic changes – can be enjoyed for free.

2. Frequent updates

This isn’t a title that was launched and then left behind by developers Riot Games. In fact, LoL has received updates on a regular basis ever since its release.

Sure, this has led to some being critical of certain tweaks every now and again, but it does help to keep the game fresh. These updates include new game modes, reworks, new skins, gameplay balancing, and so on. This ensures older players remain invested with the game, while also meaning there’s plenty to do for newcomers.

3. The rise of eSports

In recent years, eSports have exploded in popularity. While everything from FIFA to Street Fighter has helped eSports to enter the mainstream, it’s fair to say League of Legends has led the line in that regard. All you need to do is look at LoL betting’ options and see that, when compared to other eSports games, none can match its dominance in terms of available tournaments and matches.

Yet, the relationship has been mutually beneficial, as LoL’s popularity has been boosted due to being the centerpiece of eSports.

4. Its competitive nature 

A successful online game is one that presents a competitive environment, one which isn’t unfair and rewards quality players. This is what League of Legends provides. Despite its ranked mode having a reputation for being harsh, it supplies a sense of achievement when you start climbing the ladder.

Furthermore, going up in rank can give you the opportunity to reach the Challenger division. This means you get the chance to play alongside – and against – pro players. Perform well enough, and you may even get scouted for a pro team!

5. Short games 

Are 35-minute games really that short? Admittedly, this can be open to interpretation. Other eSports titles like Rocket League and FIFA have matches that last 5-15 minutes. Yet when you compare LoL to something like World of Warcraft, which can demand three hours from players each session, it’s certainly not one of the most time-intensive online games around.