One key aspect of League of Legends is that it is a team game, where a player is matched with four other strangers to defeat their enemy in a battle of skill, strategy, and teamwork.
The need for cooperation and compromise between people who don't know each other provides us with the opportunity to develop our interpersonal skills. It's not easy to handle a hot-headed player with a colourful vocabulary whose sole intention is to annoy everyone else in the game; or a player who threatens to play badly on purpose because of their "horrible team".
Getting into an argument doesn't help anyone. We have to show sympathy and understanding. Since gamers are also human beings, we actually get to use these newly-developed abilities in real life.
"There is a way to unite the four players on your team," says Gavin Chung, a 17-year-old student at Sha Tin College. "Be nice to your teammates ... don't just rage at how bad they are. Tell them how to improve in a light-hearted way. The same applies to real life."
With an unquenchable thirst for fun, developers at Riot Games Headquarters are always finding new ways to incorporate more finesse and strategy into their games. It is important that the new materials keep us engaged while challenging us. As a result, we often find ourselves altering our play style and tactics to deal with the new changes.
This pushes players to think outside the box. For example, when a change in abilities is introduced to existing champions, if we play that champion often, we will have to alter our techniques to cater for a "nerf" (when the champion is weakened) or a "buff" (when the champion is strengthened). This proves that gamers are adaptable and resourceful.
"Constant changes in the gameplay forces us to develop different strategies that best suit the game's current state," explains Alex Lee, a 16-year-old strategy-savvy player. "This process is like cracking a code - we have to race against time to find the best strategy, before the 'code' is reset upon the next patch [update]."
Like many other massively multiplayer online games, League of Legends is fast-paced, requiring instantaneous decisions to the point where they become almost like reflexes. Since the gameplay has a lot of different aspects to it, players are forced to analyse multiple things at once. It's not always possible to predict what an enemy is about to do, which results in the need for improvisation.
"I think the nature of the gameplay does prompt faster decision-making," reflects Weng Yan Chow, 17, an avid League of Legends player. "Decisions often affect important objectives, so I have to consider all of these factors on the spur of the moment."
Understanding the game
League of Legends' gameplay consists of two teams of five, each aiming to break through the opposing team's defensive towers to destroy their Nexus. Teams begin at opposite ends of the map at their own base. There are five roles in each team, and more than 120 different characters (called "champions") to select from. Items can be purchasedto increase the strength of the chosen character's abilities. Enemy characters that are slain will be "out of play" for a certain amount of time, but will respawn at their own base eventually.