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[News] When does League Season 13 start and what are 2023’s biggest changes?


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Image via Riot Games

Another year, another League of Legends season. The famed Riot Games MOBA is on the verge of welcoming in its 2023 season, complete with reworks for several roles, the return of the notorious Chemtech Drake, and more.

New League seasons—and by association preseasons too—are some of the most exciting times in the game, with a deluge of changes hitting the Rift.

Riot developers use preseason and new season launches to test and tweak the existing gameplay, upgrade and reshuffle roles, buff and nerf outlier champions and items, add new game-changing features to their long-running franchise title, and generally just muck with the League formula.

And, of course, Season 13 will be no different either.

Here’s everything you need to know about League’s thirteenth season.

Banner_Ask_Riot-1_f92l91xjzml2numkgf07-1 image via Riot Games

League of Legends Season 13 start date

Season 13 officially begins with Patch 13.1 in early January 2022.

League players will get to play around with all the new season changes way before that though. The 2023 preseason will technically hit live servers on Nov. 16, when LoL Patch 12.22 goes live on that Wednesday.

Here are the major update times around the globe:

  • 6am AEDT (Oceania)
  • 8am KST (Korea)
  • 5am GMT (EU West)
  • 3am CET (EU North-East)
  • 3am PT (North America)
  • 5am CST (China)

Riot devs will then run through testing between mid-November and the first January patch. This year, the season’s first update landed on Tuesday, Jan. 4.

image-8-1-1024x576.png Image via Riot Games

All changes coming in League Season 13 update

Oh boy, there’s a lot coming to League in the 2023 season. The Riot Games development team isn’t holding back this time around, with top lane, jungle, the jungle domain, pings, tanks, and builds all under the microscope.


The biggest changes include:

  • Chemtech Drake returns
  • New jungle changes
  • Top lane buffs
  • Ping system and objective planning
  • Experience, gold tweaks
  • Better build recommendations
  • Item overhaul for tanks

Here’s what all these League changes mean for players.

012422_ChemtechDrakeDisable_Banner-1024x Image via Riot Games

Chemtech Drake returns… with buffs

That’s right—Chemtech Drake is back, baby.

The toxic dragon originally hit the Rift in 2021 ahead of Season 12 but its zombifying-Soul power dominated games and the fog-of-war it spread across the Rift and into the jungle was match-altering. Players demanded it be removed as soon as possible and earlier this year Riot Games pulled the pin temporarily.

This time around, Riot is hoping they’ve got it right. “It’s going to be a lot easier to play around with and work around compared to the old zombie soul,” product lead Patrick Noonan said during the new Chemtech unveiling.

Chemtech Drake will now give players tenacity, healing, and shield power. The Soul buff hands players extra damage and reduction while low-health.


Read More: Chemtech Drake comes back with fresh spin in 2023

ChemtechDrake-1024x576.png Screengrab via Riot Games

Junglers get new pets

The League jungle is getting reworked (yes, again) in Season 13, in a bid to make the role easier for autofilled players and veterans alike. In particular, Riot is adding new jungle pets which will help in clear camps in the early game.


On top of pets, Riot devs are adding recommended paths for junglers to take in their initial clears. This move should bring up win rates for rookie junglers. And, head dev Matthew Leung-Harrison said, Riot is hoping “even veteran players are going to find something they like.”

The three pets give the following bonuses:

  • Noxian Embercat: Slows, deals extra damage
  • Ixtali Ixamander: Shields, additional slow resistance and tenacity
  • Ionian Cloudleaper: Grants extra movement speed

These pets will appear on the Rift alongside players, but they will be purely cosmetic changes and will disappear after certain League pet levels are reached.

Read More: New pet system to replace League jungle items

League-JunglepetsEarly-2-1024x499.jpg Image via Riot Games

Top lane becomes League focal point

League’s famous “island” role is getting some big changes in Season 13. Riot Games are changing gold and experience in other lanes to boost top lane’s power earlier. This tweak is happening in two ways—duo lanes get less EXP and top lane (or rather, both solo lanes) will get more experience across their early waves.

“Top lane has been languishing a little bit and the role, in particular, has lost some of its unique identity, especially after the teleport changes,” lead designer Matthew Leung-Harrison said.

“We think the teleport changes were good for the game overall but top lane paid more of a price for that.

“We wanted to find a unique angle for top laners to celebrate game design-wise, and this was making top lane the highest XP and highest gold champion on the map. The resulting changes of this are solo laners will receive more experience, and in order to balance mid versus top, we wanted to reduce the gold given to mid laners.


“This will result in top feeling like they get a better reward for playing in the long lane as a solo player compared to playing… in mid, which is significantly safer.”

Maokai_2-1024x604.jpg Image via Riot Games

Five Mythic items changed or added, seven non-Mythic changes

It wouldn’t be a preseason without some item changes. While this is nothing like the Mythic overhaul Riot Games dropped onto the game in recent seasons, modern League continues to build around Mythics.

This preseason, three new Mythic items will be introduced to the Rift, with a few others also being updated generally. New and updated items include:

  • Mythics
    • Icathia’s Endurance
    • Radiant Virtue
    • Iceborn Gauntlet
    • Goliath’s Ascendiary
    • Rod of Ages
  • Legendaries
    • Catalyst of Aeons
    • Abyssal Mask
    • Sunfire Aegis (losing Mythic status)
    • Turbo Chemtank (losing Mythic status)
    • Randuin’s Omen
    • Spear of Shojin
    • Ravenous Hydra

Read More: Every new, returning, updated League item: all S13 changes

League of Legends item shop in-game Image via Riot Games

More pings, objective planning system

Non-voice communication in League is getting way better in Season 13 with the addition of six new pings, an expanded wheel, and an all-new objective voting tool for players to decide their next moves.

“We want to give players tools to better align with teammates,” Riot said of the new-look communication suite. “League of Legends is a team based game. That’s one of the things that makes it so wonderful, but it can also be frustrating when you’re playing with strangers.”

Read More: League introduces revamped ping dial, objective voting

9600DE9A-4B49-439C-8FA4-92C220AAC4F9-102 Image via Riot Games

Experience, gold changes

In Season 13, different lanes will get different levels of experience and gold. This change from Riot is an attempt to balance out how quickly each role hits its power spikes and when the mid game begins.

  • Solo laners: Less experience from creeps
  • Bot lane: Less experience from creeps for both champions
  • Mid lane: Minions worth less gold until 14 minutes
League-minions-1024x576.jpg Image via Riot Games

As mentioned above, League players across the globe will be able to sink their teeth into Season 13 changes before 2023 arrives. The first preseason update will be Patch 12.22, which is scheduled to go live on Nov. 16.

The full season launch will then arrive on Jan. 10, 2023.

Update Monday, Nov. 14, 10.47pm CT: Added specific League update times for Patch 12.22 and more details on the top lane experience and gold changes.

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