I wanted to see if I could play League of Legends on Mac, so I did some research and found some interesting facts. I’ll what I learned about playing League of Legends on Mac with you below.
Can You Play League of Legends on Mac?
Yes. League of Legends has a native macOS client and you can play it on Mac without emulators or virtual machines. League of Legends is not a demanding title. It can run at a stable 60 FPS on most Macs.
The new M2 and M1 Macs will offer much better performance (+100 FPS) on League of Legends than Macs with Intel CPUs.
How to Play League of Legends on Mac
- Visit the League of Legends client page and choose the client for your region. The Mac client is available for all regions.
- Click on Download Mac Installer.
- Wait for the client to download the files and launch the game.
- Adjust the graphics settings to find the sweet spot for your Mac’s hardware.
Now let’s take a look at how League of Legends runs on various Mac products. League of Legends has been available on macOS since 2013.
League of Legends on Mac Benchmarks
Note: Product variations can affect performance but not by that much. For example, 8 GB vs 16 GB of RAM or 7-Core GPU vs 8-Core GPU.
2022 MacBook Air M2
The MacBook Air M2 can run League of Legends at native resolution (2560 x 1664) and maximum graphics settings with between 80 to 100 frames a second. You won’t have any issues.
2020 M1 MacBook Air
The 2020 M1 MacBook Air runs League of Leagues at 60 frames a second with ultra settings and native resolution.
In big fights, the framerate can dip to 50 frames a second but it will quickly recover. The frame rates are between 55 – 70 frames a second. To get more frames, lower the graphics settings or the resolution.
M1 MacBook Pro
The M1 MacBook Pro can run League of Legends on native resolution with the highest settings with a frame rate of between 55 – 70 frames a second. The performance is very similar to the M1 MacBook Air.
Mac Mini M1
The M1 Mac Mini has no problems running League of Legends. You can expect to get 50 – 70 frames a second with the settings maxed out and native resolution.
2019 MacBook Air Intel I5
The 2019 Intel MacBook Air struggles with League of Legends on maximum settings and native resolution. You can expect 30 – 40 frames a second with all the settings maxed out. However, you can get near 100 frames a second by lowering the resolution and graphics settings.
Playing League of Legends on Mac Tips
Here are some tips to get you more wins when you play League of Legends on a Mac.
Enable Metal Graphics on M1 or M2
Macbooks running Apple Silicon will run games much better using the Metal API. There should be an option to choose the API version when you launch League of Legends. It may also run on Metal by default.
Use an External Display
If you’re using an M2 or M1 MacBook, I recommend using an external monitor that has a high refresh rate. The larger screen and smoother experience will make it much easier for you to target other players.
MacBooks don’t have an HDMI port but you can use a simple USB-C to HDMI adapter to connect an external monitor. I like the MSI Optix G271 144Hz monitor.
Besides the improved refresh rate, when you use an external monitor, your palm won’t touch the MacBook’s trackpad.
Customize Mouse Settings with LinearMouse
The default mouse speed settings on MacBooks are not the most accurate. If you that you’re missing clicks, I suggest taking a look at an application called Linear Mouse.
It allows you to customize a wide variety of mouse settings which can make your mouse movement more accurate. In a game like League of Legends, mouse movement is very important. Using this app can improve your performance!
Limit Frame Rate to Save Battery
Macbook’s internal displays have a refresh rate of 60 Hz. Modern Macbooks can run League of Legends at 100 or more frames a second. The problem is you can only “see” 60 of those frames. Limiting your frame rate can help save battery and also keep the laptop from overheating after long sessions.
You can easily achieve this by enabling V-Sync in League of Legends. Bear in mind, that limiting the frame rate often introduces input lag or screen tearing so you will need to see what works for you. Generally, even after hours of gameplay, the new Macs are not at risk of overheating but they can get a bit warm.
League of Legends Not Opening on Mac
Mac users have been complaining about League of Legends not opening on Macs, even though it’s fully supported by macOS.
Here’s how to fix the issue:
- Open Finder
- Click on Go
- Select Go to Folder
- Type /users/shared/RiotGames
- Delete everything in the RiotGames folder
- Open Application, right-click League of Legends and choose Show Package Contents
- Delete the file called “Lockfile”
- Uninstall and re-install from scratch
- Update your macOS
- Force quit from activity monitor
- Try a few more times (sometimes it works after the second attempt)
Not sure how to uninstall League of Legends from Mac? Follow Riot Game’s official tutorial.
To summarize, League of Legends has a macOS client, and it’s playable on most modern Macs. The Macs that get the best performance are those running Apple Silicon. Intel Macs will also be able to run League of Legends, but you will likely need to lower some settings to get a stable 60 frames a second.
On a closing note, remember that Macs are not gaming machines. Only a handful of games, for example, World of Warcraft will run natively on Apple Silicon.
Other games can run on Mac with emulators and virtual machines (Crossover or Parallels), but it’s a hassle to set up, and the frame rates are usually not that good. And some games like Valorant will refuse to run on macOS at all.
If you’re a gamer, it’s probably a better idea to go with a PC or Windows laptop.