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The Ultimate Guide to Playing League of Legends on Steam

Hey there! As a fellow gaming enthusiast, I know you‘re wondering: can you play League of Legends through Steam? It‘s a great question. As someone who loves both LoL and Steam, let me walk you through everything you need to know.

To get right to the point: No, League of Legends is not directly available on Steam anymore. But there are still a couple ways to launch it through Steam!

I‘ll explain more below, but first let‘s quickly go over why LoL isn‘t on Steam these days…

A Bit of History: Why LoL Left Steam

League of Legends used to be on Steam up until November 2013. At that point, Riot Games decided to pull the game from the platform.

Why did they do this? Mainly because Riot wanted full control over League of Legends. They created their own client and launcher so they could handle all the distribution and updating. Can‘t really blame them – with over 100 million monthly players, you want to be able to manage things directly!

But while you can no longer buy LoL on Steam, there‘s still a way to add it to your library…

Adding LoL as a Non-Steam Game

Even though League of Legends is not officially on Steam anymore, you can add it as a "non-Steam game" in your library. This lets you launch it through Steam as a convenience.

Here‘s exactly how to do it:

  1. Open up your Steam client and click on the "Games" menu
  2. Choose "Add a Non-Steam Game to My Library"
  3. Browse your computer and select the League of Legends launcher executable file
  4. LoL will now be listed in your collection of games on Steam!

Pretty simple right? Now you can start up LoL by going through Steam. Just keep in mind it will still open the Riot Games client – Steam is just serving as a shortcut.

Can You Run League of Legends on Your PC?

Now before you add LoL to Steam, you probably want to know if your computer can even run it properly. Let‘s talk specs!

Here are the minimum system requirements to play League of Legends:

  • CPU: 1.5 GHz dual core processor
  • RAM: 1 GB
  • GPU: Intel HD 3000 integrated graphics
  • HDD: 12 GB of available hard drive space
  • OS: Windows 7, Windows 8.1, or Windows 10

And here are the recommended specs for a better experience:

  • CPU: 3.0 GHz quad core processor
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GT 740 or AMD Radeon R7 240 (or equivalent)
  • HDD: 16 GB free hard drive space
  • OS: Same as above

As you can see, League of Legends runs on most modern computers – you definitely don‘t need a high-end gaming PC. This low barrier to entry is a big reason why LoL has over 115 million monthly players as of 2022.

According to Riot Games, LoL can run smooth on Intel integrated graphics. But a discrete GPU like the GeForce GT 740 will let you max out the video settings.

No matter your specs, make sure you update your graphics drivers. Outdated drivers can throttle performance.

What About Playing on Laptops?

League of Legends isn‘t too demanding – many laptops can handle it no problem as long as they meet the minimum specs above.

The processor is the most important component. Even an Intel Core i3 dual core CPU with integrated graphics should play LoL nicely.

A gaming laptop would be ideal, but not mandatory. For example, the thin and light ASUS Zenbook 14 can run LoL smoothly thanks to its 11th gen Core i5 processor and Intel Iris Xe graphics.

If your laptop has a 60Hz display, that also helps compared to a 30Hz screen which could cause some lag during hectic teamfights.

Overall, LoL is so popular globally because it runs well on affordable mainstream PCs and laptops.

Can You Play League on Steam Deck?

Valve‘s Steam Deck is a new handheld gaming PC. And yes – you can absolutely install and play LoL on Steam Deck!

Even though LoL isn‘t available on Steam, the Steam Deck runs a desktop version of Linux that gives you access to install software just like on a regular PC.

Simply download the League of Legends installer from the official website and run it on the Steam Deck. The game will be added to your SteamOS library.

Thanks to its Zen 2 CPU and RDNA 2 graphics, the Steam Deck has enough power to run League of Legends smoothly. The 1280×800 resolution 7-inch screen makes gameplay possible, if not ideal.

So while the Steam Deck experience won‘t be as seamless as running native Steam games, you can definitely enjoy LoL on the go with Valve‘s handheld!

Tips for Running League of Legends on PC

Here are some tips to improve performance when playing League of Legends on your Windows PC:

  • Close any background apps before launching LoL – this frees up RAM and CPU cycles.
  • Keep your GPU drivers updated through GeForce Experience or Radeon Software. Game-ready drivers optimize LoL performance.
  • Adjust the graphics settings based on your rig. Disable taxing options like anti-aliasing if needed.
  • Use a wired Ethernet connection for reliable low-latency networking. WiFi works but can cause lag spikes.
  • A quality gaming mouse with high DPI improves precision. Mechanical keyboards are great too.
  • Play on your main display for the best experience. Use a second monitor for guides or Discord.

Following these tips will let you squeeze out as much FPS as possible when playing League of Legends on both desktops and laptops.

The Bottom Line

While LoL is no longer directly available on Steam, you can still add it to your Steam library and launch it from there. Riot Games removed League of Legends from Steam back in 2013 so they could fully control it on their own platform.

But with some simple workarounds, you can run League of Legends through Steam for convenience. And it will play smoothly on most modern mainstream Windows machines thanks to relatively low system requirements.

So unlock your favorite LoL champions and get ready to battle on Summoner‘s Rift. Just don‘t expect seamless integration with Steam‘s servers. Riot‘s client still rules that experience!

Let me know if you have any other questions about running League of Legends. I‘m always happy to help a fellow PC gaming enthusiast. Enjoy!