See also: List of Summoners
A Summoner is a mage skilled in the use of rune magic. While ordinary magic harmonizes with and channels thaumic energy, rune magic allows a mage to manipulate magic on a deeper level, such as to alter the flow of leylines or to transport magically empowered beings through the arcanosphere.
The word "Summoner" is an old one, dating back thousands of years. The most obvious explanation for the etymology is that it refers to a Summoner's ability to "summon" beings from far away by binding to their arcane signature and conducting them through thaumic space, as a charged particle may be conducted through an electromagnetic field. Modern Summoners perform a ritualized version of this incantation to bring Champions to the Fields of Justice. The arcane signature surrounding an active Field is sufficiently intense that a Summoner could call forth a Champion (or a being with a comparably strong thaumic signature) from virtually anywhere on Valoran, although by 25 CLE this was a rare occurrence.
Other scholars contend that the root word "summon" references the act of diverting energy flows through runic magic. Historical records indicate that early uses of runic magic often inadvertently called forth elementals and other such beings; these dramatic (and often quite destructive) incidents may have defined the common person's image of a "Summoner", giving rise to the term.
Summoners of the LeagueEdit
In the modern era, the word "Summoner" is generally understood to mean a mage who has joined the League of Legends and studied rune magic at the Institute of War, now the only internationally sanctioned source of such knowledge. Technically speaking, any mage who uses runic magic could be called a "Summoner", but rune mages not affiliated with the League have largely vanished. The Council's sealed archives describe many operations in which Summoners and Champions were dispatched to capture or destroy such "rogue" Summoners.
Summoners are the custodians of rune magic. They maintain the old traditions, ensure that such destructive knowledge is restricted within the confines of their closely monitored order, and study how the underlying principles of rune magic may be used to repair the harm done by millennia of destructive use of the same.
The nations of Valoran employ Summoners to assist Champions on the Fields of Justice. Modified rune magic techniques allow Summoners to link telepathically with Champions and empower them with magical energy, from their own mastery of arcane forces or from enchanted items contained in the League's armory. While so linked, a Champion and their Summoner fuse together quite closely; although neither fully controls the other, and they do retain separate identities, the lines between their minds and spirits blur considerably.
Summoners also operate as diplomats and negotiators, representing both their homelands and the international interests of the League. The balance between these roles varies from Summoner to Summoner. Some are idealists who believe wholeheartedly in the League's mission, while others view the League as simply another arena through which their member-state's interests (or their personal interests) may be pursued.
Summoners are also dispatched as agents of the League to investigate magical phenomena and neutralize threats to Runeterra. Though not so powerful as Champions, Summoners are far more numerous and accessible—and, in most cases, significantly less volatile.
Becoming a SummonerEdit
The first requirement for acceptance by the Institute of War as a candidate for Summoner training is a high degree of magical aptitude and education. Summoner candidates are almost invariably accomplished wielders of conventional magic. (Though this is not to say that other skills are irrelevant.) They must also generally secure the sponsorship of a member-state or a ranking member of the League. Finally, they must endure a Judgment, during which other Summoners delve deep into their minds and assess their motivations and strength of character.
Upon entering the League, Summoners receive a "Summoner Name" from an enchanted, semi-intelligent codex kept at the Institute. This name resonates with their aura signature, and operates to identify them across languages and spells. It is not entirely clear why the codex assigns the names it does, often including strange numerological symbols or nonsense-words; some believe that it has become quite eccentric over time.
A Summoner may change their name through a ritual incantation. The Riotous Fists Clan, an illustrious order of Summoners with close ties to the Council, oversees this process.
Summoner training is conventionally divided among thirty "levels" of teaching. The principal battle-spells used on the Fields, themselves stylized distillations of rune magic spells, are termed "Summoner Spells", and introduced gradually over the course of this curriculum.
Summoners may participate in League operations and even matches upon the Fields before they have completed their training, though this is somewhat unusual.
- ↑ For example, Zilean's background references "Summoner-Knights" destroying Urtistan during a Rune War thousands of years ago.
- ↑ of Justice Vol. I, Issue 7.
- ↑ Update 5: The Harrowing.
- ↑ Update 1: The Harrowing Approaches ("The astrological charts and manaflow equations from your Tenth Level studies at the Institute").
- ↑ Update 5: The Harrowing (in which Summoner Sam "Terra" Asoni joins an expedition into Bilgewater during the Black Mists, prior to completing his 30th level).