League of Legends: The Five Fiercest Rivalries in LoL Lore

Legends of Runeterra. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
Legends of Runeterra. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /
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League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games.
League of Legends. Photo Courtesy of Riot Games. /

The lore of League of Legends is filled with betrayal and bloodshed, but these five rivalries are the most ferocious.

Piltover versus Zaun

These are not only (literal) neighbors in Runeterra, but also fiercely competitive due to the overlap of technological prowess and stark economic realities. Piltover is an affluent, mercantile region that is also known as “the City of Progress” due to its high population of scientists, researchers, and hextech craftsmen.  It is often described as the “cultural center” of Valoran, with many well-known artists, fashion designers, and architects throughout the city.

On the flip-side, Zaun is a city that is built below the cliffs on which Piltover resides. With little light reaching the city and toxic runoff from Piltover making the air and water hazardous, Zaun is “the dark mirror” of Piltover’s affluence. Many of Piltover’s hextech inventions make their way into the black markets of Zaun, as do inventors who dare to engage in dangerous research not permitted in Piltover.

The two cities were once one, united, but now are separate and engaged in rivalry. Piltover thinks itself the better of the two due to its culture and class structure. On the other hand, Zaun despises the pretentious Piltover that rose from (and then abandoned) their city.

Noxus versus Freljord

While there are many Demacia/Noxus rivalries that are prominent in League of Legends (with Jarvan IV fighting against Swain, with Demacians like Garen, Shyvana, and Quinn on his side), the region has never engaged in full out battle. Instead, Noxus has often faced pressure on its own borders from the north, with the Winter’s Claw – one of the more dominant Freljord tribes – often pushing south to raid Noxian villages.

These raids were actually so bothersome that Boram Darkwill pulled several warhosts (including Darius) from the ongoing Ionian war to repel the Winter’s Claw, led by their new warmother Sejuani. This campaign lasted for years, with Winter’s Claw absorbing nearby tribes that included spirit walkers, Iceborn, Stormborn, and other worshipers of Frejlord’s old gods, ambushing Noxian troops across the cold plains.