Sylas the Unchained is League of Legends' newest champion, and while he may look like a terrifying villain, his backstory is full of tragedy that may justify his actions. Here are five things you need to know about Sylas' lore.

1. Sylas the Unchained Lore: Sylas Once Worked for the Demacian Government

Sylas was born a mage to a poor family in Demacia, one of ​League of Legends' kingdoms.​ His parents convinced him to turn himself in to the mageseekers, a military organization that hunts down and imprisons or kills magic users. With his special ability to see the magical powers of others, Sylas became a powerful asset for the mageseekers and helped them to catch many magic users.


2. Young Sylas Accidentally Killed Three People

On his last mission with the mageseekers, Sylas began to doubt the goodness of their mission. When his handler nearly kills an elderly farmer while trying to imprison the farmer's young, magic-using daughter, Sylas tries to protect the ​daughter from his handler's wrath. Instead, he accidentally channels the little girl's lightning magic, instantly killing his handler, the farmer, and the farmer's daughter.


This event sends Sylas into hiding from the Demacian government.


3. Sylas Spent More Than 15 Years in Prison

Once the mageseekers captured Sylas, they put him in prison. In fact, that prison most resembled solitary confinement. Sylas was chained with magic-draining stones that prevented him from moving much at all or using magic. He spent 15 years in that prison.


4. Sylas and Lux Have a Complicated Friendship

After 15 years in prison, Sylas received his first visitor: Lux. The two struck up a friendship as he taught her about how to wield magic and she brought him books and news from the outside world. Eventually, ​Lux brought Sylas a forbidden book that taught him how to use his chains to help him escape.


When Lux's parents found out she'd been meeting with Sylas, they had him sentenced to execution. At the gallows, Lux accidentally touched Sylas' chains, giving him the burst of magic he needed to break free. Once free, he killed everyone at the hanging except for Lux.


5. Sylas Now Leads Rebels Against Demacia

Now back on the lam from the Demacian authorities, Sylas has slowly built up a group of followers who believe Demacia unfairly oppresses mages. Sylas and his group plan to topple the Demacian throne and put a stop to the oppression.​


Riot Games ​revealed Sylas on Tuesday.


Photo courtesy of Riot Games