Can I Run League of Legends? 4 Important Checkboxes You Must Tick

Riot Games products are rather lightweight, but the question, “Can I run League of Legends” is still on your mind? Find the answer here.

League of Legends OS Requirements

League of Legends was designed with supporting as many computers as possible. OS version may seem insignificant for you reading this at home but massive-scale LAN gaming centers are a different story. Thus, it is no surprise that League of Legends still supports Windows 7, an operating system released back in 2009 (a few days later than League!). 

"Can I run League of Legends" was hardly a question with 2009 graphics
Good old 2009 graphics

For Apple products, the longevity is not that great but still solid. You can run the game on OS X 10.10 (Yosemite), which was released in 2014. There is, however, a significant catch with League on Mac: you can’t install the game on Catalina. League’s installer still runs at 32-bit so you would not be able to boot it up. The game works and updates fine if installed on a previous version of macOS, but this is not an option for new devices and fresh OS installations.

Interestingly, League of Legends was even less demanding when it comes to Windows requirements. For the majority of League’s lifespan, you could install it on Windows XP (released in 2001)! The new client, which was released in 2017, put an end to this insane compatibility. 

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League of Legends CPU Requirements

League of Legends is being quite soft on CPU Requirements as well. Any 3GHz processor will do. Note how there is no mention of cores: this is because a single-core CPU will do. There’s also this oddly specific supporting SSE2 instruction set or higher, but it’s kinda moot. Intel CPUs have utilized the set since 2001 while AMD caught up just 2 years later.

The recommended CPU requirements for League of Legends are generous, too. You’ll simply need a double-core 3Ghz unit. For multi-core processors, Riot Games also specify that all cores should be running at 3Ghz and higher. This is hardly a concern nowadays as symmetric multiprocessing has proven to be the superior option for desktop. 

League of Legends RAM Requirements

RAM requirements are one of the areas where League of Legends gets tricky before you even start the game. Technically, Riot still claims you can run League on just 1GB of RAM, just like in the good old days. The caveat here is that the game now requires at least Windows 7. Technically, you can run the 32-bit version of Windows 7 on one gig, but certainly not a modern game on top of the OS. With 2 GBs, however, you should be good to go in both Microsoft and Riot Games’ eyes.

For Mac, the minimum RAM requirements are 2 GB. You won’t struggle to reach that, as OS X Yosemite and above can only be installed on devices that fit the same number. Riot Games specifically mention that 4 GB is “strongly recommended”, and my experience suggests the same.

League of Legends GPU Requirements

Once again, Windows users have it pretty light. All you need is a “shader version 2.0b-capable video card” with the standard going as back as the mid-2000s. 99% of the time, if you still have a reason to boot up a PC/laptop, your GPU can handle LoL. It’s the same with integrated graphics. The recommended option is anything dedicated with at least 512 MB of RAM. I can run League of Legends on an office laptop just fine.

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LoL Mac players would need at least NVIDIA GeForce 9600M GT or ATI Radeon HD 2600 to start the game. Just like with RAM, if you have a Yosemite-compatible laptop, the GPU will fit League of Legends GPU Requirements. The recommended GPUs for Mac are NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M / ATI Radeon HD 4670 or better.

A comfortable frame rate of at least 60 frames per second seems pretty easy to achieve, too. According to GPUCheck, even cards from 2008 (like NVIDIA GeForce GT 640) can give you 147 FPS on low settings. Unless you’re bottlenecked by the processor, you’d have to reach really far to find a GPU that makes League an unpleasant experience. Of course, if something else barely passes LoL system requirements, that could affect performance even with a NVIDIA GeForce Titan.

So Can I Run League of Legends?

Yes, you most likely can. The caveats to look out for:

  • macOS Catalina or macOS Big Sur (won’t support the installer)
  • Low RAM (2GB is the minimum, but Riot strongly recommend at least 4)
  • An old integrated GPU (despite the specs, they are not born equal)

What are the minimum League of Legends requirements on Windows?

You need a 3GHz processor, 2 GB of RAM, a shader version 2.0b-capable video card, all powering Windows 7 or better

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What are the recommended League of Legends requirements on Windows?

They are a 3GHz dual-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, a dedicated GPU with at least 512 MB of RAM, and Windows 7 or better with the latest Service Pack

What are the minimum League of Legends requirements on Mac?

You need a 3GHz processor, 2 GB of RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT / ATI Radeon HD 2600, all powering OS X Yosemite or better (not Catalina or Big Sur).

What are the recommended League of Legends requirements on Mac?

They are a 3GHz dual-core processor, 4 GB of RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M / ATI Radeon HD 4670, and macOS High Sierra or Mojave (not Catalina or Big Sur).

Can I install League of Legends on macOS Catalina or macOS Big Sur?

The game’s installer is a 32-bit one, and Apple moved away from supporting this architecture with macOS Catalina. You can still play League if you installed it on an older version, explore various workarounds for 32-bit apps, or simply dual-boot to Windows. My experience on an entry Macbook Air from 2013 showed that this also gives you superior performance.

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by Denis Matusovskiy
June 24, 2020

1 comments

alt
Maav
July 02, 2020 at 11:01 am
Guys, even though LoL uses a 32-bit installer on Mac, I got it to install just fine on my 2019 16-inch Core i9 MBP (that shipped with Catalina) without any workarounds or whatsoever. It's also working just fine on Big Sur with substantially better framerate to what I had observed on Catalina (170fps+ on Big Sur vs 100-ish on Catalina; both on singleplayer matches with maxed out graphics) on native resolution (though I do expect it to run better on Windows, restarting to play is a hassle).

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