Updated on June 24, 5:14 p.m. (GMT+8): Added more information on Swarm | Operation: Anima Squad.

League of Legends is known for its intense 5v5 battles on Summoner’s Rift.

And occasionally, Riot Games offers more than just PvP (player versus player) thrills. For those looking for a break from the competitive scene, there’s a world of LoL PvE game modes and experiences to explore.

The game dev has experimented with various formats, offering unique challenges and opportunities to team up with friends against AI.

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From wave-based battles to narrative-driven adventures, these PvE experiences cater to players who want to hone their skills in a less stressful environment or enjoy a different side of the League universe.

What are LoL PvE game modes?

PvE stands for “Player versus Environment.” It’s a gameplay style where players work together to overcome challenges presented by the game itself, rather than competing against other players.

Challenges may involve fighting enemies controlled by the computer (often called NPCs, or non-player characters), solving puzzles, navigating obstacles, or surviving in a harsh environment.

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You can experience PvE modes by yourself, or team up with other players to work together.

Since everyone is working towards a common goal, PvE games often emphasize teamwork and communication.

Complete list of all LoL PvE game modes, past and present

  • Doom Bots (2015, 2016)
  • Invasion (2017)
  • Odyssey: Extraction (2018)
  • Swarm | Operation: Anima Squad (2024)

Doom Bots (2015, 2016)

Devil Teemo skin in League of Legends
Credit: Riot Games

Doom Bots throws League of Legends champions into a nightmarish twist.

Here, the AI gets supercharged, transforming enemy champions into relentless hunters. Teamwork and strategy become paramount as players fight for survival against these insanely difficult opponents.

It’s a test of your skills under extreme pressure, pushing you to coordinate and outsmart these overpowered foes.

Invasion (2017)

LoL PvE game mode Invasion featuring Star Guardian skins Lux, Miss Fortune, Jinx, Lulu, and Poppy
Credit: Riot Games

This LoL PvE game mode transforms Summoner’s Rift into a vibrant park overrun by alien invaders. Here, players become Star Guardians, wielding their celestial power to capture strategic points across the map.

Each captured zone continuously generates points for your team. The key to victory lies in strategic map control – the more territory you hold, the faster your score climbs, leading you to triumph over the alien menace.

This exciting game mode celebrated the arrival of the popular Star Guardian skin line.

Odyssey Extraction (2018)

Odyssey Jinx in League of Legends
Credit: Riot Games

In Odyssey: Extraction, a LoL PvE game mode, players take on the roles of space pirates — Jinx, Malphite, Sona, Yasuo, Ziggs — and face off against waves of enemies.

They’ll need to blast through hordes, collect loot, and complete objectives, all while racing against the clock.

This exciting game mode celebrated the launch of the popular Odyssey skin line, which had featured villainous Kayn.

Swarm | Operation: Anima Squad (2024)

Seraphine in Anima Squad 2024 PvE game mode bullet heaven survival
Credit: Riot Games

In early 2024, Riot Games announced a new LoL PvE game mode that “would be a little different take on League’s core gameplay, but a bit more chill comparing to Arena.”

Swarm | Operation: Anima Squad is the first bullet heaven survivor PvE game mode in League of Legends, where players can fight against a horde of enemies in either single-player or co-op.

In Swarm, you and up to three friends can assemble a team of elite Anima Squad members. These champions, reimagined with a cybernetic animal twist, are humanity’s last hope against the monstrous Primordians.

The action takes place on a brand new map — Final City. Your objective? Mow down enemies, complete missions, and survive for as long as possible.

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As the battle unfolds, you’ll unlock and upgrade powerful weapons to take down the enemy swarms. You can also recruit new Anima Squad members, adding fresh abilities and strategies to your arsenal.

By earning gold during your missions, you can purchase permanent Power Ups. These buffs strengthen your entire team, giving you an edge in future operations. With each match, your team will progress further and further, taking the fight back to the Primordians.

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