The story of the League of Legends takes place on the planet of Runeterra.
Geography and Geothaumology
The two known continents are Valoran and Nyroth.
The League was founded by the nations of Valoran, a continent ravaged by arcane warfare.
As of 25 CLE, the factions of Valoran included:
- Bandle City
- Bilgewater (encompassing the Marai and Atlantean civilizations)
- The Freljord
- the Shadow Isles
Other regions of significance included:
- Mount Targon
- the Plague Jungles
- the Voodoo Lands
Valoran is a highly interconnected place. Some speculate that, without the Rune Wars and the founding of the League, the nations of Valoran might have considerably less cause (and perhaps less ability) to interact.
Runeterra is suffused by magical energy, which travels along conduits known as leylines. The pattern of energy flow created by these leylines generates a complex arcane topography, and magic can be used to harness this energy and direct it according to the mage's will. Where leylines intersect with sufficient intensity, nexuses are formed, amplifying and "tinting" the thaumic energy in remarkable ways.
Most magic operates by harmonizing with the planet's natural flow of energy. Rune magic is that most dangerous kind of sorcery which utilizes runic inscriptions to manipulate leylines, and in some cases even to rupture them and channel the full force of the magic they contain. Rune magic is more powerful than ordinary magic by orders of magnitude. During the Rune Wars, it was used to obliterate entire armies, split mountains, boil seas, and transform mortals into beings of godlike power.
The Rune Wars so damaged the arcane foundations of Runeterra as to threaten total planetary destruction. Only the founding of the League of Legends, with its concomitant restrictions on the use of rune magic, averted this apocalyptic fate.
In the aftermath of the Rune Wars, wild magic has spread across Valoran, giving rise to strange new phenomena. Perhaps chief among these would be the appearance of Champions, remarkable individuals with abilities unrivaled by any save the legendary rune-empowered warriors of old.
In 24 CLE, yordles from Bandle City discovered the continent of Nyroth using their newly established lunar observatory. Once home to a glorious civilization, it had been ruined more than one thousand years prior to the founding of the League, when an aftershock from the Rune Wars ruptured the continent's central nexus.
- Several thousand years before the founding of the League, the Watchers came to the Freljord.
- More than two thousand years before the founding of the League, Azir attempted the first Imperial Ascension, with disastrous results; the Shuriman Empire swiftly collapsed.
- Over one thousand years before the founding of the League, an aftershock from the Rune Wars devastated Nyroth.
- 13 CLE: Noxus invades Ionia, and Ionia petitions the League for membership.
- 20 CLE: Ionia defeats Noxus in the Noxus versus Ionia rematch.
- 21 CLE: The Kalamanda incident, in which Demacia and Noxus battle atop a newly discovered nexus, nearly destroys the League.
- 23 CLE: The Freljord is victorious in the Mirrorwater dispute. Demacia wins the subsequent battle over the island of Ceruleana.
- 23 CLE: The Void War begins when a void rift opens in Shurima.
- 23 CLE: The Noxian refugee crisis created by the Void War culminates in war in Shon-Xan. Ionia defeats Noxus, and much of the Noxian military is destroyed.
- 24 CLE: The discovery of pyrikhos in Shurima catalyzes the Hextech Revolution. Conflict over the use of pyrikhos ends with the Battle of Shurima between Demacia and Zaun, and their respective allies. A resurgent Noxus joins Zaun in dealing Demacia a crushing defeat.
- 24 CLE: The continent of Nyroth is discovered, and several Valoranian nations compete to explore and control this new realm. In the end, Ionia prevails, and together with the Freljord restores Nyroth to its pre-cataclysm state.
- 25 CLE: Azir proclaims Shurima's independence, and wins recognition from the League on the Fields of Justice. In the end, Noxus succeeds in reasserting its old territorial claims, and establishes a new Noxian dominion that encompasses a significant part of the Shuriman desert.