How 'League of Legends,' a Free Video Game, Makes Billions

Watch out 'Tetris', there's a new sheriff in town.

by Inverse Video

Playing video games professionally is no longer just a pipe dream for Halo-obsessed high schoolers. The world of eSports is now a multimillion-dollar industry that is giving the world of physical sports a run for its money. League of Legends is the biggest online video game in the world, and both casual and professional players have made its creators, Riot Games, into one of the most profitable video game companies in history.

We all know people throw tons of money at video games, with a single game costing around $60, and the consoles themselves are somewhere in the $400 range. This is where League of Legends is different.

The popular game is for your computer, something that you probably already own, so no expenses there. To download, you go to their website, click a button, take out your wallet, set it to the side, and begin playing as it’s completely free.

You can play the game at the highest level with thousands of hours of gameplay all while never paying a single cent. This is impressive, but there are plenty of games that are free to play out there, especially on the internet or your phone. What’s most impressive is that Riot Games makes insane money every year. In 2015, Riot reported a profit of $1,600,000,000. Yes, that is over a billion dollars.

Justin Dodd digs into microtransactions and the epic fandom surrounding League of Legends that, consequently, making Riot Games bank.

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