Bilgewater, over the years, has become a vital stop for trade ships traveling near the Blue Flame Island. While this increased the nation's wealth and influence over Valoran, it has also made the city-state a major refuge for piracy, and the island itself a tempting target for pirate raids. Rum is the city's major export, which is made in the various pubs and taverns down the Fleet Street. Before sailing into the port, onlookers can see the image of a white skull on the large rock behind the city.
The native inhabitants of Bilgewater are rugged seafaring folk and many, naturally, are also pirates. While the League can usually keep vessels that remain within protected waters safe, they have little jurisdiction over what occurs in the open seas. Sailors intrepid enough to venture out there are free to decide their own fate and fortune. Many Bilgewater pirates also sail to other nations and are known for their raids on settlements. The port-city is the home to League Champion . He arose to represent his nation, though his true motives, as he is a pirate, are questionable. Gangplank and , often bicker over their city-state's future direction. Both are striving to unite the people of Bilgewater in order to turn them into a strong and independent society.
Bilgewater is a relatively lawless city-state, particularly in the pirate-run slums. The majority of the city's denizens carry a variety of weapons, which range from cutlasses to pistols, in order to protect themselves at all times. Traditionally, the Bilgewater warriors coat their weapons with the remains of their drinks the night before a battle or raid. This has the effect of increasing the pain of wounds caused and often spreads diseases such as gangrene, inhibiting their enemies ability to fight back. Many of their larger ironclad ships are also outfitted with multiple cannons that can strike targets over long distances.
Ties between Bandle City and Bilgewater have always been a little tense, mainly due to the occasional pirate assaults on yordle vessels.
During Noxus' hostilities on Ionian soil, many pirates from Bilgewater sailed to the island nation. For years they ruthlessly pillaged the settlements along the island's coastlines and fought naval battles with Ionian vessels when engaged. Even after the war, many Ionians still feel deep enmity towards Bilgewater due to their denizens' actions.
While the two nations have no true alliance, Bilgewater and Noxus are on relatively beneficial terms with one another. Bilgewatian pirates on occasion will assist the Noxian military, should they see the endeavor profitable. Though the League eventually put a stop to Noxus' military campaigns, , is a mainstay down at Bilgewater's Fleet Street. She can often be seen poking her head into the pubs and taverns in search of sailors down on their luck, offering an even share of the plunder to those willing to sail under her command.
On September 19th, 129 years before the League, the port city of Bilgewater was officially founded, creating a haven and destination to pirates and seafarers everywhere. What started off as a one-day celebration of Bilgewater's origin became a weekend, and due to the raucous nature of the town's inhabitants, celebration spread through the entire month. September has come to embody sailors enjoying the end of the temperate season, drinking the last of the summer ales and participating in unruly games to prove their worth as the fiercest pirate in Valoran.
A sampling of the festivities include:
- Lady Luck
- A continuous gambling tournament where skill is just as highly prized as being quickest to draw the knife in your boot. A vast assortment of games and competitions await, with gold Valors passing hands after every blackjack and snake eyes on the table. Lady Luck can be a fickle mistress, easily swayed by a card up your sleeve and the words "all or nothin'"