Wild Rift is the perfect jumping-on-point for League of Legends

Lloyd Coombes
League of Legends Wild Rift key art

League of Legends is an intimidating game, but Wild Rift is a great way to find your feet. Here’s why.

If you’ve just finished watching Arcane, and are wondering how to get started with League of Legends, we’ve got bad news – it’s going to be tough.

League of Legends is an unforgiving war of attrition at the best of times, where you’ll need to learn a lot, and quickly, to have any chance of holding your own. Even playing against bots for practice means long games.

Step forward Wild Rift, which takes League of Legends’ core tenets and shrinks it down for phones and tablets (and, eventually, consoles). The 2020 release is very much still a MOBA, but it’s a much more approachable one without sacrificing the depth offered by League on PC.

Rift’s Wild


If you’ve ever played League of Legends, or any MOBA, you’ll know the basic format here. It’s a five vs five affair, with combat split between three lanes.

There are minions to slay and turrets to dismantle, all while leveling up your Champion and earning gold to spend on items. That hasn’t changed with Wild Rift, but it does have some smart ways of sanding down the rougher edges of the League PC experience.

The most noticeable one, right from the off, is that a match can take around 20 minutes to complete — roughly half of a standard LoL PC match. That’s a huge boon for anyone that’s looking for a burst of action and not a long-term commitment, and naturally allows for players to roll straight into a second game.

So, how does Riot squash all that action into half the time? A big part of that is a change to a smaller map. Wild Rift’s map still offers very similar landmarks (turrets, the jungle, etc), but inhibitors are gone, as are Nexus turrets. Turret plating is also removed, helping games feel like less of a war of attrition.

Deep Rift

Wild rift gameplay

That’s not to say that the game is less tactical than its PC counterpart. Wild Rift has been steadily adding Champions since launch, and it still features dozens of items to build out your character with.

Items see the biggest change, since they’re able to be pre-ordered and it takes less time to build up your Gold reserves to get buying. They also no longer have active abilities, and are handled as enchantments instead.

This all feeds into what must’ve been Riot’s most difficult task – making a game like League of Legends work on a touchscreen. Wild Rift (naturally) drops clicking a location to send your character there, instead reworking to a more controller-like approach — there’s a movement on the left, and abilities are mapped to the right.

There are targeting options for turrets, and skill shots like Lux’s Final Spark are intuitive to aim at opponents. It’s a system that works so well, it’s become the only non-turn-based game I play on a phone.

Also, while I love to watch high-level League players go at it, I’m far too old now to learn how to play competitively. While Wild Rift does offer its own ranked matches, I have more fun knocking the stuffing out of the game’s bots in PvE mode, and teaming up with friends to battle one of the two available difficulties is a great time — and a great way to test out new Champions.

Visually in a League of its own

league of legends lol wild rift xayah
Character models in Wild Rift are great.

You’ll want to test them out, too, because Wild Rift is a good-looking game. League of Legends may be looking a little long in the tooth after well over a decade, but Wild Rift features new character models that look fantastic.

Whether it’s swinging Garen’s sword, throwing Draven’s axes, or flinging cards as Twisted Fate, it’s a game that looks much more modern than League on PC. There is a downside, though: No skins will carry over, and you’ll have to unlock Champions as you go.

Still, the in-game economy is pretty generous when it comes to earning new characters, and while skins are pricey, they’re never mandatory.

So, is League of Legends: Wild Rift worth playing? You bet, and it’s actually a much easier game to commit to than the PC version. If you’re interested in getting into the franchise, it’s an easy recommendation.

While you’re here, why not read about why Legends of Runeterra is worth your time?

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About The Author

Lloyd was formerly Dexerto's Games Editor. He can regularly be found playing Destiny 2 or any game that involves shiny loot.