Whether you know the League of Legends characters or not, here are the main Arcane characters and how they fit into the universe.
League of Legends first launched in 2009. The series is always coming out with some new content that ultimately draws me back in. Arcane is no different. For those who haven’t yet lost part of their soul to League of Legends and who might not even know what Arcane is, it is a brand new animated Netflix original set within the League of Legends universe.
According to Riot, the company behind League of Legends and Arcane, Arcane came to be as a means to expand and build more of the universe around the characters that players already know. Arcane is also a show for people who don’t know anything about League of Legends and those who already know some of the history and lore but want to see that mythos take life.
Video games being adapted for the screen is nothing new. Over the years, we’ve seen many huge franchises try their shot at it and fail. However, what is new is good adaptions. That’s something we’ve seldom seen before. When creating Arcane, Riot opted to keep complete creative control over their baby, and the results truly speak for themselves.
Arcane Characters and Their League of Legends Lore
One of the biggest draws to League of Legends has always been its characters and their lore. I can still distinctly remember playing with my friends and us all arguing about whose character had the best backstory. To say that my relationship with League is a toxic one is downplaying things. It’s like saying that Harley and The Joker make such a wholesome couple.
Yet, as with most toxic things in life, I’ve just never been able to kick it from my life entirely, and a big reason for that is how invested I feel in the characters, the world, and the story that League of Legends and now Arcane, have created.
Jinx “The Loose Cannon”
While it’s easy to look at Jinx and only see her as the mad, weapon-wielding lunatic she’s known as today; one must take a minute a remember her as she used to be: a young, innocent girl from Zaun. Jinx used to struggle to feel like she fit in anywhere unless she was busy tinkering on one of her weapons, then she felt right at home. While no one knows what happened to that young, curious girl, we do know that when she stepped into the limelight in Piltover, she did it with a bang and an explosion… or two.
Jinx gained almost instantaneous notoriety throughout Piltover because of the “pranks” she would play on the wealthy merchant clans. These pranks mostly bordered on criminal, and the goal was to create as much chaos as she possibly could. When the citizens of Piltover started to attribute this chaos to various gangs from the undercity, Jinx decided to make sure her mania would be attributed to her and her alone. Since then, Jinx has made sure to always leave her calling card at the scenes of her crimes. If Jinx has been somewhere, you can bet on finding some vivid graffiti and a few taunting messages aimed at the sheriff’s ally, Enforcer Vi.
As Jinx’s notoriety grew, the people of Zaun became divided on whether they believed Jinx was a hero standing up against Piltover or a very dangerous criminal, set on bringing about a war. When Jinx eventually got tired of her small-time “pranks”, she decided to up the ante by tagging the walls of Piltovers treasury with the details of her plan to rob the building. Although not everyone believed Jinx would be bold enough to follow up on it.
When the day of carnage finally arrived, Sheriff Caitlyn, Vi, and many wardens were all ready to grab Jinx before she could enter the treasury. Still, unbeknownst to them, Jinx was already inside. By the time Vi, Caitlyn and the wardens became aware that they had been outsmarted, the treasury was already a smouldering ruin, and Jinx was nowhere to be found.
To this day, Jinx remains at large and is still creating as much chaos as possible. Her ultimate endgame and obsession with taunting Vi remain a mystery.
If you’d like to read more about Jinx you can read her official story here
Vi “The Piltover Enforcer”
Vi doesn’t remember much about her childhood, and she would far rather forget the few things she does remember. Growing up, Vi would often find herself running with various gangs and using her first to survive. Which meant Vi became skilled at punching her way out of trouble at a young age. Vi has been trying to get answers about her parents throughout her life. The orphanage once told her she had been found adrift in a bassinet large enough for two in the ruins of a chem lab.
As Vi grew up, she started forming a gang of her own, and being quick to anger and eager to use her fists, she was rarely found without a black eye or split lip. Vi’s bright pink hair made her a sight to behold on the streets of Zaun, and if there was a scrape to be in or a scam to run, Vi would be in the midst of it.
Vi eventually found a mentor who helped her control her more self-destructive habits and helped her reinforce her moral code. One day after listening to the conversation of a group of miners, Vi came to learn about some big deals being made and how the payments would be delivered. The amount of money being moved would mean very little to a chem-baron, but to Vi and her gang, it was an absolute fortune they couldn’t turn down.
When the heist started, everything was going well up until one of the gang members killed the mine owner using a pair of oversized gauntlets and trapping the rest of the miners in the tunnels. As the rest of the gang members fled with the loot, Vi stayed behind, unwilling to just let all the miners die. Vi ended up picking up and using the gauntlets, even though they clamped down her arms to the point of agony, to smash open a path in the mine and free the miners.
The following day Vi tracked down the gang members responsible for almost killing so many, and using the gauntlets, took on the entire gang and beat them up so badly the story is still whispered about. When Vi suddenly disappeared, rumours started spreading that she had been killed in the undercity. However, when a vicious gang ended up being brought down by Piltover Sheriff Caitlin, everyone learned the true fate of Vi, as she stood by the sheriff’s side as her ally. No one knows the real reason behind how or why Vi ended up working with Caitlyn, but these days, it’s hard to ever spot one without the other…
If you’d like to read more about Vi you can read her official story here
Caitlyn Kiramman – “The Sheriff Of Piltover”
Caitlyn was born into all the wealth and influence she could ever desire. However, instead of spending her time embracing the social graces expected from one of her stature, Caitlyn preferred to spend her days in the outdoors. Since she can remember, Caitlyn has been equally skilled at mingling with the elite as she is at hitting a target at a hundred paces with her father’s old musket.
Caitlyn has always had a firm and unbendable understanding of right and wrong regardless of her sheltered upbringing. Caitlyn’s mother was once the highest member of Clan Kiramman and always warned Caitlyn of the world’s harsh realities. Warnings Caitlyn paid no head until Progress Day some years later.
When Caitlyn returned home after a wonderful Progress Day celebration, she found her home completely ransacked and no trace of her parents. Caitlyn immediately set out to find them. All of the years spent outside, honing her tracking abilities, paid off when Caitlyn was able to track down the thugs responsible for the destruction of her home. Their trail led Caitlyn straight to a safe house where her mother and father were being tortured for information. Under the cover of darkness, Caitlyn managed to alert the Piltover Wardens and save her parents. However, the initial C was all thugs could or would say about who had hired them.
Caitlyn and her family started to rebuild their life once more, but they had all changed. Caitlyn’s mother could no longer handle the politics of clan life, leaving a vacuum in the leadership she once held, and Caitlyn found herself pulling away from her parents, unwilling to take their lives as her own. It was then that Caitlyn started throwing herself into uncovering the mysterious person behind the ominous “C”, an obsession that would see her establishing herself as a private investigator known for finding anyone or anything.
After a series of successful cases, Caitlyn was offered the position of Sheriff, a position she first refused, until eventually deciding it might help her find the true identity of “C”. Caitlyn would go on to become a highly respected sheriff and bring in a rather unorthodox partner, a brash girl from Zaun, Vi.
If you’d like to read more about Caitlyn you can read her official story here
Jayce “The Defender Of Tomorrow”
Jayce was born into Piltover and was raised on one rule: Don’t go into Zaun. Jayce always had a way of understanding machinery and its inner workings, this knack landed Jayce the honour of being the youngest ever apprentice to Clan Giopara. Jayce accepted this position and immediately started constructing various Hextech devices for Piltovers working class. Only one other person could come close to matching Jayce’s intelligence, and that was a man named Viktor. Jayce and Viktor became fast friends, and soon they were working together. One of their first inventions was a construction suit that the dockworkers could use. It enhanced their strength, allowing them to work more efficiently.
However, before long, Jayce and Viktor would reach an impasse when Viktor proposed they add a chemtech implant into the suit, which would increase the wearer’s strength even further and prevent them from getting tired or disobeying any instruction given to them by a superior. Viktor viewed this addition as a brilliant move into the future.
At the same time, Jayce saw the removal of free will as immoral. Viktor was Jayce’s only friend, but after they failed to reach a compromise, Jayce went to the academy and warned them of Viktors plans. The academy then barred Viktor, and he was kicked out of Piltovers scientific community for good. After some time of once more working alone, Jayce found and started experiments on a seemingly worthless blue crystal.
Jayce wasn’t sure what made this crystal special all that he knew was that it was constantly calling to him. Soon after his experiments started, Jayce found Viktor on his doorstep once more. Viktor explained that since he was kicked out, he had been working on his own, secret project and now he believed he had figured out the way to end disease, hunger and hatred for good. If Jayce would join him once more, the two of them could be the ones to save humanity once and for all.
All Viktor needed to make his “glorious evolution” a success was a power source. A power source like that blue crystal Jayce had. When Jayce refused, a fight broke out, which resulted in Jayce getting knocked unconscious, and when he came to, the crystal and Viktor were nowhere to be seen, leaving behind only the smallest of crystal shards.
This forgotten shard, eager to be reunited with the rest of the crystal, would lead Jayce into a remote warehouse containing countless horrors: Corpses. Lots of corpses. Their skulls opened and hollowed out, and their brains were transplanted into metal soldiers who were hooked up to the stolen crystal. Viktors Glorious Evolution. Without thinking, Jayce raised his Hextech hammer and crushed the crystal, shattering it and making the entire warehouse collapse, with Jayce barely making it out in time. It is thought by many (not Jayce), that Viktor perished in that warehouse, although his body was never found.
If you’d like to read more about Jayce you can read his official story here
Victor “The Machine Herald”
Viktor was born in Zaun to supportive parents who did everything they could to encourage his passion for inventing and building. From a young age, Viktor would devote his every waking minute to either building or studying, hating that he would need to stop for stupid things like food or sleep. Something else that upset Viktor was that he would have to constantly relocate because of accidents in the nearby chem labs. This annoyance Viktor experienced led to him doing intensive research into Zuans many, many accidents. The results of his finding were that near on all of them were the result of human error. It was then that Viktor started to contact all the local businesses to help create inventions that would make for safer work environments and fewer accidents.
Viktors work on implementing automation reduced the number of accidents in the forge to zero in under a month. It wasn’t long before Viktors work was commonplace in Zaun. Viktor soon started working with the only other person who matched his intellect and work ethic, a young yet insufferable man named Jayce. Amid Viktor and Jayce’s work together in Piltover, another major chem-related incident completely devastated parts of Zaun and led to Viktor returning to his once home to offer his help. During this time, Viktor created a custom-built golem named Blitzcrank that would aid in the cleanup. Blitzcrank was instrumental in saving countless lives during this time and started developing sentience, something which Viktor had never even imagined possible.
With everything cleaned up back home, Viktor returned to Plitover once more only now he believed that any human involvement just made any process inefficient and dangerous. While working on a big project with Jayce, Viktor revealed to Jayce that he was working on a chem suit that would allow an outside operator to bypass the wearers’ natural responses and effectively control them. This discussion soon turned heated and then violent, and after Jayce reported Viktor to the council, Viktor vowed never to work with Jayce again.
Alone once more, Viktor found himself sinking deeper into his work and depression, angry that once again “human emotion” was disrupting his work, so he started to operate on himself secretly. Slowly but surely removing part after part of his flesh and replacing it with machines. By the time all of his surgeries were done, Viktor was nothing like the Viktor who had once lived and worked in Piltover. Instead of wanting to better human lives and society, Viktor now wanted to work on his ultimate project: Glorious Evolution. Viktor believed in renouncing flesh and replacing it with Hextech augments, creating a being free from error or suffering.
After yet another chem accident resulted in hundreds of people being turned into rabid psychotics, Viktor brought as many of them as he could back to his lab to try and undo the damage done. The chem toxins had already started eating away at their brains, but Viktor was able to slow the process by opening their skulls and using his inventions to filter their bodies of the poison. Only his equipment was slow and not up to the task of helping so many, so against his better judgement, he sought the help of an old friend, Jayce.
Viktor spotted a powerful power source in Jayce’s lab, and when Jayce refused to listen to reason and hand it over, Viktor had no other choice than to take it by force. When Viktor got back to the warehouse, he started the painstaking process of hooking all of the people up to the power source, but before the process could be completed, Jayce burst in and smashed the power crystal with his hammer. The result was the entire warehouse coming down and killing all of those Viktor was trying to save within.
Viktor ended up making it out of the warehouse with his life intact and a new laser focus: bettering humanity by removing humanity.
If you’d like to read more about Viktor you can read his official story here
Heimerdinger “The Revered Inventor”
Not much is really known about the brilliant and eccentric scientist known as Professor Heimerdinger. Heimerdinger is one of the most esteemed inventors and minds Piltover has ever seen and will ever see again. Heimerdinger throws himself into his work to the point of obsession and spends his days trying to answer the questions others can not. Heimerdinger believes knowledge isn’t something to be hoarded; instead, it should be shared, and he will happily teach everything he knows to anyone who will listen.
If you’d like to read more about Heimerdinger you can read his official story here
Ekko “The Boy Who Shattered Time”
Ekko was already constructing machines before he could crawl. Ekko didn’t become a genius; he was born one. Throughout Ekkos childhood Ekko watched his parents age beyond their years. They were constantly being worked to the bone, spending all their waking hours suffocating in dangerous factories while earning meagre wages and making their Piltovan bosses rich in the process.
Ekkos parents didn’t mind this because they were trying to provide a promising future for their son. They didn’t want Ekko to be dragged down by all of Zaun’s crime. Instead, they wanted him to one day be able to rise up into the opportunities and wealth that Piltover had to offer and which they believed he deserved.
Ekko, however, didn’t see Zaun through his parent’s eyes. Instead, he saw a place overflowing with untapped potential through the catastrophe. This view of Zaun spurred Ekko to throw himself into his inventions. Ekko also had a close friend group of eager upstarts such as himself. They started calling themselves the “Lost Children of Zaun”, and instead of formal education, the streets were their teachers and the world their playgrounds. While Ekko was exploring a recently demolished laboratory, one night, Ekko found a strange blue crystal that seemed to glisten with magical energy.
Ekko immediately knew what he had found; every Lost Child of Zaun knew the all-powerful “hextech” stories and the power they held. Now here he was, holding a piece of one in his hands. Ekko immediately started experimenting with the crystal. When one of his experiments went slightly awry, Ekko opened his eyes to see multiple splintered realities and an echo version of himself within each of these. After some initial panic, Ekko and his echos managed to work together in order to repair the hole that had been torn in reality and harness the power of the crystal into a device that would allow Ekko to manipulate time.
A little while later, while climbing up a clocktower with his friends, one of the handholds ended up giving way, and one of the friends started to plummet to certain death. Ekko activated his new device without thinking and was wrenched backwards through time. Once again, Ekko watched as his friend reached for the handhold only for it to fall away, but this time Ekko knew what was coming and grabbed his friend and pulled him to safety. To the rest of the Lost Children of Zaun, Ekko was a hero with supernatural reflexes, but after Ekko told them about his device, it became a game. They would dare each other to do various crazy and reckless things knowing that Ekko would save them from danger.
These time rewinding antics landed Ekko in the sights of some of Zaun and Piltovers most dangerous and influential people. But until they can catch him, Ekko only focuses on changing the past to change the future.
If you’d like to read more about Ekko you can read his official story here
Singed “The Mad Chemist”
A.K.A. My personal champion of choice over the last decade and arguably the best champion in the game
Before Singed was the madman he is known as today, he was ordinary, if not brilliant man just living his life in Piltover. After studying at the University of Piltover, Singed started working there. His research into the natural sciences began getting recognized. Singed was a vocal critic of Hextech, seeing magic as nothing more than a crutch that those who were lazy and incapable relied on. Singed preferred to spend his time delving into alchemy and its chemical potential.
However, his hatred for Hextech earned him ridicule from fellow academics before long, and his funding dried up, effectively forcing him out of the university and Piltover. This caused Singed to embrace and start a new life in Zaun. Life in the undercity had its perks, it was cheap, and there was a high demand for innovation. Singed was able to find work within the chemtech industry quickly and lend his skills.
Once again researching and experimenting in chem, Singed was now able to cast a wider net when it came to his experiments. Singed was able to augment humans and animals, sometimes rather unethically, while pushing his field forward at a rapid rate. However, this progress was coming at the expense of his health. Singed decided to use his research to engineer a few stimulants that would be able to keep him alert and the ability to work for up to weeks at a time before crashing.
After making a name for himself, Singed was approached by Emystan, a Noxian military commander who wanted Singeds’ knowledge of alchemy to help her get the advantage in the war in Ionia. With the promise of wealth beyond his imagination, Singed put aside his concerns and questions and instead poured all of himself into creating a new weapon. The weapon ended up being an unstable and volatile alchemical fire. Unleashed in Ionia, the fire burned so hotly it fractured stone and tainted the earth so that nothing would grow there again.
Now that finances are no longer a struggle, Singed has shifted his focus from the destruction of flesh to the preservation and transformation of it instead.
If you’d like to read more about Singed you can read his official story here