An elderly woman in China knelt before a statue of a League of Legends character and prayed, touching off a viral reaction of equal parts amusement and sympathy.
Someone inside an internet café snapped a picture of the woman kneeling and burning incense before a larger-than-life statue of Garen, a character who has been in League of Legends for about six years. The statue appears to be some kind of promotional piece for the café, where League of Legends is commonly played.
Shanghaiist noted that Garen bears a resemblance to Guan Yu, an historical figure who was deified centuries ago and who still is worshipped by some today. Shrines to Guan Yu are common, though typically a lot smaller than this.
Chinese social media reacted somewhat compassionately, Shangaiist noted. Some pointed out that mistakenly praying to a video game character may be funny, but an old woman's reasons for beseeching divine intervention may not be. Then again, maybe she knew who this was all along and is a huge fan of LoL.
Polygon Backstory is a podcast celebrating conversations about the games we play. This week we talk with Train Jam organizer Adriel Wallick.