How to Change the Language in League of Legends

Playing a game in a foreign language can be frustrating and even result in misunderstandings that can affect the game’s outcome. League of Legends is available in multiple regions, but their language options are usually limited to the most popular languages within the region. The new client doesn’t allow you to change your game’s language to Korean, for example, unless you’re on the Korean server.

How to Change the Language in League of Legends

However, there is a way to go around the client’s limitations and play your favorite game in a selection of languages. In this article, we’ll explain how to make these changes as a new way to enjoy the game.

How to Change Language in League of Legends in a New Client

2020 was a year of change for League of Legends, and one of the most important steps towards modernization has been the widespread introduction and improvements of the old League client. The new client offers more customization and better responsiveness.

However, the designers have locked the language-changing options to only a select few languages, depending on the server your account is in.

If you want to change your game’s language to one of the regionally-available alternatives, here’s what you need to do:

  1. Open the League client without signing in. If you’re logged in by default, you’ll need to sign out of the game before restarting the client.
  2. Press the “Settings” button on the bottom-right corner (it looks like a gear).
  3. Click on the “language selection” menu.
  4. Select the language from the dropdown list.

The list will change depending on your server. For example, NA users have access only to English (even though Canadians use French as a secondary language), while EUW players have access to four different regional languages alongside English.

The only way to reliably access new languages without messing with game files is to switch to a different server region. This can be done through the client’s store page but will cost you a pretty penny to do so. Some regions (such as Korea or China) can’t be transferred to or from at all. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Open the client.
  2. Open the store by clicking the stack of coins icon on the top.
  3. Select “Accessories.”
  4. Find “Server Transfer.”
  5. Select the desired region.

Note that changing regions is not available at all times due to seasonal resets and technical requirements.

How to Change Language in League of Legends on PC

Legally speaking, changing the game language to one that is not supported in the region is against RIOT’s terms of use and can be seen as manipulating the game files to your advantage. However, you’re unlikely to get in trouble for changing the game language, as it’s a minor change that doesn’t offer a gameplay benefit.

If you want to choose a language unsupported by your game server, you’ll need to make some changes on your PC. The easiest method to change the language is to change how the client works:

  1. Open the League of Legends’ installation directory. By default, the installer will direct it to C:/Riot Games/League of Legends. If you’ve installed the game on another drive, go to that drive instead.
  2. Right-click on the “LeagueClient” application (ends in .exe).
  3. Select “Send to” then select “Desktop (create shortcut).
  4. On the Desktop, right-click the newly-created shortcut.
  5. Select “Properties.”
  6. In the “Target” field, append the following text without quotes: “–locale=XXXXX”

XXXXX is the five-character language code. Here is a list of codes and the language they correspond to:

  • ja_JP: Japanese
  • ko_KR: Korean
  • zh_CN: Chinese
  • zh_TW: Taiwanese
  • es_ES: Spanish (Spain)
  • es_MX: Spanish (Latin America)
  • en_US: English (alternatives en_GB, en_AU)
  • fr_FR: French
  • de_DE: German
  • it_IT: Italian
  • pl_PL: Polish
  • ro_RO: Romanian
  • el_GR: Greek
  • pt_BR: Portuguese
  • hu_HU: Hungarian
  • ru_RU: Russian
  • tr_TR: Turkish
  • Go to the “General” tab.
  • Check the “Read-only” box.
  • Press “Accept” to confirm changes.
  • Open the new shortcut to enjoy the changes.
  • You can change the language back to your region’s default ones by using the client settings directly.

If this doesn’t work, you’ll need to access the game files and change them directly with a text editor (Notepad will do):

  1. Open the League of Legends’ installation directory. By default, the installer will direct it to C:/Riot Games/League of Legends. If you’ve installed the game on another drive, go to that drive instead.
  2. Open the Config folder.
  3. Right-click on the file named “LeagueClientSettings.yaml” then select “Edit in Notepad.” If you don’t see the option initially, use the “Open with” option and select Notepad or a similar simple text editor.
  4. Locate the line starting with “locale:” Next to that, you’ll notice a code for the game language. English is coded as “en_US”.
  5. Change the code to a different one.
  6. Save the changes.
  7. Go back to the “root LoL” folder.
  8. Right-click the League of Legends executable app, select “Send to” then “Desktop (create shortcut).”
  9. On the Desktop, right-click the newly-created shortcut.
  10. Select “Properties.”
  11. In the “Target” field, change the language code on the end to the desired language code. If you don’t see the language code, append the following text without quotes “–locale=XXXXX” where XXXXX is the language code.
  12. Press “Accept” to confirm changes.
  13. You can now enter the game client from the new Desktop shortcut and see it displayed in the new language.

How to Change Language in League of Legends on Mac

If you’re using a Mac, you should first try to open a client in a different language directly:

  1. Go to your LaunchPad.
  2. Open “Automator.”
  3. Select “Application.”
  4. Search for “Shell” then open the first result (“Run Shell Script”).
  5. Copy the following line into the text field:

open /Applications/League\ of\ Legends.app/Contents/LoL/LeagueClient.app –args –locale= XXXXX

Replace XXXXX with the five-character language code of the language you want to use. Here’s the list of languages and their codes again:

  • ja_JP: Japanese
  • ko_KR: Korean
  • zh_CN: Chinese
  • zh_TW: Taiwanese
  • es_ES: Spanish (Spain)
  • es_MX: Spanish (Latin America)
  • en_US: English (alternatives en_GB, en_AU)
  • fr_FR: French
  • de_DE: German
  • it_IT: Italian
  • pl_PL: Polish
  • ro_RO: Romanian
  • el_GR: Greek
  • pt_BR: Portuguese
  • hu_HU: Hungarian
  • ru_RU: Russian
  • tr_TR: Turkish
  • Click “Run”, then click “OK” on the prompt.

If you want to save this on the Desktop, use the “Command + S” shortcut before running the script to save it as a separate file on the Desktop for later use.

If this doesn’t work and you need to change the game files, the steps are slightly different compared to PC:

  1. Access “Applications” from the “Go” menu.
  2. Right-click on League of Legends, then select “Show package content.”
  3. Find the “system.yaml” file.
  4. Right-click the file, select “Open with,” then use a text editor of your choice (Macs usually come with default text editors like TextEdit).
  5. Locate the lines with “default locale” and “available locales” in them.
  6. In these lines, you’ll find a language code corresponding to the current language displayed in the game.
  7. Change the codes in the lines to the codes you want (for example, “en_US” if you want to switch the language to English).
  8. Save the changes.
  9. Still in the LoL folder, go to the Config folder, then locate the “LeagueClientSettings.yaml” file.
  10. Open it in the text editor following the same steps as above.
  11. Locate the lines with “locale” in them.
  12. Make the same changes to the language codes in those lines.
  13. Save the changes to the file.
  14. Open the client and see the language has changed.

How to Change Language in League of Legends to Japanese

If you want to change the game’s language to Japanese, the most reliable way is to transfer your account to the Japanese server. However, for most of us, this will cause a considerable increase in ping and reduce the game’s responsiveness to a crawl. If you aren’t near Japan and still want to change the language, you’ll need to look at our “How to Change Language” tutorials. Use the Japanese language code “ja_JP” when making changes to system files.

How to Change Language in League of Legends to Chinese

The Chinese server is closed to transfers, meaning that you can’t change to the region if you’ve created an account elsewhere. If you want to use Chinese in the game and the client, you’ll need to either make a new account on a Chinese server or follow our instructions for changing how the client operates in the “How to Change Language on PC” or “How to Change Language on Mac” tutorials. Use the language code “zh_CN” when making changes to files and choosing the language code.

How to Change Language in League of Legends to Korean

The Korean server is another region-locked server that doesn’t allow transfers. You’ll need to make a new account (and only if you’re actually in Korea), or you can tinker with the game files and clients as shown in our tutorials to get all the benefits. Use the language code “ko_KR” when making changes.

Additional FAQ

Why Can’t I Change My Language in League of Legends?

If you’re playing on the NA server, you’re limited to using English by default when using the client settings. The only way to get more languages for your client is to change the underlying game files to load in a different language.

How Do You Change the Language Back to English in LoL?

After you’ve made changes to the client language, follow the exact process you did before and use the code “en_US.” Alternatively, you can use the “en_GB” or “en_AU” codes for British and Australian variations, although they don’t change much.

How Do I Change my LoL Client Language?

The steps we outlined above will change the language for the client and the game, including text and audio.

How Do I Change my Region in League of Legends?

Here’s how to transfer your account to a different region:

• Open the client and log in.

• Open the store by clicking the stack of coins icon on the top.

• Select “Accessories.”

• Find “Server Transfer.”

• Select the desired region.

Account transfers might be unavailable for certain regions (China, Korea, Southeast Asia) or during seasonal resets.

What Programming Language Is League of Legends in?

The game is coded in C++, but the client uses HTML5 as a base and more C++ to integrate it with the game, and the chat and messaging service uses Erlang. RIOT also uses C#, Python, Ruby, Java, and Go for some technical aspects of the server-client infrastructure. You can go to RIOT’s technology blog for more info.

Language Changes for the Win

If you’re using an unfamiliar language, chances are you’re more distracted and can’t find the information you’re looking for. Thankfully, changing the language in LoL can be quite simple, even though the developers haven’t made a direct path to do so.

What language do you play LoL in? Let us know in the comment section below.

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