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Armor

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Armor is a stat shared by all units, including minions, monsters, and buildings. Increasing armor reduces the physical damage the unit takes. Each champion begins with some armor which increases with level (ThreshSquare.png Thresh being the only exception). You can gain additional armor from abilities, items, masteries, and runes. Armor stacks additively.

Excluding ThreshSquare.png Thresh whose base armor does not scale with levels, base armor ranges from 65.5 (GnarSquare.png Gnar) to 104.5 (RammusSquare.png Rammus) at level 18.

Damage reduction

Incoming physical damage is multiplied by a factor based on the unit's armor:

$${\rm Damage\ multiplier}=\begin{cases} {100 \over 100+{\it Armor}}, & {\rm if\ }{\it Armor} \geq 0\\ 2 - {100 \over 100 - {\it Armor}}, & {\rm otherwise} \end{cases}$$

Examples:

  • 25 armor → ×0.8 incoming physical damage (20% reduction, +25% effective health).
  • 100 armor → ×0.5 incoming physical damage (50% reduction, +100% effective health).
  • −25 armor → ×1.20 incoming physical damage (20% increase, −16.67% effective health).

Stacking armor

Every point of armor requires a unit to take 1% more of its maximum health in physical damage to be killed. This is called effective health.

Example: A unit with 60 armor has 60% more of its maximum health in effective health, so if the unit has 1000 maximum health, it will take 1600 physical damage to kill it.

What this means: by definition, armor does not have diminishing returns in regard of effective hitpoints, because each point increases the unit's effective health against physical damage by 1% of its current actual health whether the unit has 10 armor or 1000 armor.

Note: Unlike health, increasing armor also makes healing more effective because it takes more effort to remove the unit's health than it does to restore it.

For a more detailed explanation, see this video.

When a unit's armor is negative because of armor reduction or debuffs, armor has increasing returns, because negative armor cannot reduce effective health to less than 50% of actual health. A unit with −100 has 66.67% (gains −33.33%) of its maximum health as effective health.

Armor as Scaling

These use the champion's armor to increase the magnitude of the ability. It could involve total or bonus armor. By building armor items, you can receive more benefit and power from these abilities.

Champions

  • BraumSquare.png Braum's Stand Behind Me.png Stand Behind Me grants armor equal to 15 / 17.5 / 20 / 22.5 / 25 + (10 / 11.5 / 13 / 14.5 / 16% bonus armor) to himself and the target ally for 3 seconds.
  • LeonaSquare.png Leona's Eclipse.png Eclipse grants armor to herself equal to 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 / 60 + (20% bonus armor) for 3 seconds, deals damage after that time to units around her, and retains the defensive buff for an additional 3 seconds if any enemy is struck by the blast.
  • MalphiteSquare.png Malphite's Brutal Strikes.png Brutal Strikes passively grants armor to himself equal to 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30% of his total armor.
    • MalphiteSquare.png Malphite's Brutal Strikes.png Brutal Strikes deals 15 / 30 / 45 / 60 / 75 + (10% armor) + (10% AP) physical splash damage per basic attack in a 225-radius.
    • MalphiteSquare.png Malphite's Ground Slam.png Ground Slam deals 60 / 100 / 140 / 180 / 200 + (30% armor) + (20% AP) magic damage.
  • RammusSquare.png Rammus's Spiked Shell.png Spiked Shell grants attack damage to himself equal to 25% of his total armor.
    • RammusSquare.png Rammus's Defensive Ball Curl.png Defensive Ball Curl increases his armor by 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 / 120 for 6 seconds, and deals 15 / 25 / 35 / 45 / 55 + (10% armor) magic damage to enemies who basic attack him.
  • TaricSquare.png Taric's Gemcraft.png Gemcraft grants his next basic attack bonus magic damage equal to 20% of his total armor after using an ability.
    • TaricSquare.png Taric's Shatter.png Shatter passively grants 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 bonus armor to himself and 12% of his total armor to himself and nearby allied champions.
    • TaricSquare.png Taric's Shatter.png Shatter's deals 40 / 80 / 120 / 160 / 200 + (20% armor) magic damage in a 375-radius and reduces nearby enemy armor by 5 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 + (5% armor) for 4 seconds.
  • TrundleSquare.png Trundle's Subjugate.png Subjugate steals instantly 20% of the target's armor. He continues to drain an additional 20% the target's armor over 4 second before decaying 4 seconds after the drain completes.

Items

  • Thornmail item.png Thornmail, upon being hit by a basic attack, reflects magic damage back to the attacker equal to 25% of your bonus armor plus 15% of the incoming damage (before being reduced by defenses).

Increasing armor

Items

  • Chain Vest item.png Chain Vest: +40 armor. 750 Gold.
  • Cloth Armor item.png Cloth Armor: +15 armor. 300 Gold.
  • Dead Man's Plate item.png Dead Man's Plate: +50 armor, +600 health. Unique Passive – Dreadnought: While moving, build stacks of Momentum, increasing movement speed by up to 60 at 100 stacks. Momentum quickly decays while under any other form of crowd control, and slowly decays while slowed. Unique Passive Crushing Blow: Basic attacks discharge all Momentum, dealing 1 bonus physical damage per 2 stacks. If 100 stacks are discharged, damage is doubled to +100 and the target is slowed by 75% decaying over 1 second (melee only). 2750 Gold.
  • Frozen Heart item.png Frozen Heart: +90 armor, +400 mana. +20% cooldown reduction. Unique Aura: Nearby enemies suffer −15% attack speed. 2600 Gold.
  • Glacial Shroud item.png Glacial Shroud: +20 armor, +250 mana. Unique Passive: +10% cooldown reduction. 900 Gold.
  • Iceborn Gauntlet item.png Iceborn Gauntlet: +60 armor, +30 ability power, +10% cooldown reduction, +500 mana. Unique Passive – Spellblade: After using an ability, the next basic attack (on hit) deals 125% base AD bonus physical damage to enemies near the target, and creates a field around the target for 2 seconds that slows enemy movement speed by 30% (1.5 second cooldown) (half-sized field if ranged). 2850 Gold.
  • Ninja Tabi item.png Ninja Tabi: +25 armor. Unique Passive – Blocks 10% of the damage from all basic attacks. Unique Passive – Enhanced Movement: +45 movement speed. 1000 Gold.
  • Randuin's Omen item.png Randuin's Omen: +60 armor, +400 health, -10% damage taken from critical strikes. Unique Passive – Cold Steel: When hit by basic attacks, reduces the attacker's attack speed by 15% for 1 second. Unique Active: Slows the movement speed of nearby enemy units by 35% for 4 seconds (60 second cooldown) (500 range). 2850 Gold.
  • Seeker's Armguard item.png Seeker's Armguard: +30 armor. Unique Passive: Killing a unit grants 0.5 bonus armor, and 0.5 bonus ability power. This bonus stacks up to 30 times. +25 ability power. 1200 Gold.
  • Sunfire Cape item.png Sunfire Cape: +45 armor, +450 health. Unique Passive – Immolate: Deals 25 + (1 × level) magic damage per second to nearby enemies. 2600 Gold.
  • Warden's Mail item.png Warden's Mail: +45 armor. Unique Passive – Cold Steel: When hit by basic attacks, reduces the attacker's attack speed by 15% for 1 second. 1100 Gold.
  • Zeke's Harbinger item.png Zeke's Harbinger: +35 armor, +250 mana, +50 ability power, +10% cooldown reduction. Unique Active – Conduit: Bind to target ally (60 second cooldown). Unique Passive: When within 1000 units of each other, you and your Conduit will generate 1 charge every second, up to 100, with a bonus 4/2 charges whenever you or your ally attack, and 8/4 on spell cast. At 100 charges, causing damage consumes them, increasing your and your ally's ability power by 20% and critical strike chance by 50% for 8 seconds. 2250 Gold.

Variable Availability

  • SC Guardian Angel item.png Guardian Angel: +50 armor, +50 magic resistance. Unique Passive: Upon taking lethal damage, restores 30% of maximum health and 30% of maximum mana after 4 seconds of stasis (5 minute cooldown). 2800 Gold.
  • H Guardian's Horn item.png Guardian's Horn: Unique Active – Battle Cry: Gain 20 armor, 30% movement speed, and 20 magic resistance for 3 seconds (25 second cooldown). +200 health, +125% base health regeneration. Unique Passive: Nearby enemy spellcasts reduce the cooldown of Battle Cry by 1 second. 1015 Gold.
  • CH Hextech Sweeper item.png Hextech Sweeper: +25 armor, +225 health, +250 mana, +20% cooldown reduction. Unique Passive – Trap Detection: Nearby stealthed enemy traps are revealed. Unique Active: A stealth-detecting mist grants vision in the target area for 5 seconds, revealing enemy champions that enter for 3 seconds (60 second cooldown). 2080 Gold.
  • TC Moonflair Spellblade item.png Moonflair Spellblade: +50 armor, +50 ability power, +50 magic resistance. Unique Passive – Tenacity: Reduces the duration of stuns, slows, taunts, fears, silences, blinds, and immobilizes by 35%. 2570 Gold.
  • S Ohmwrecker item.png Ohmwrecker: +50 armor, +300 health, +150% health regen, +10% cooldown reduction. Unique Active: Prevents the closest enemy tower from attacking for 3 seconds (120 second cooldown). This effect cannot be used against the same tower more than once every 8 seconds. Unique Passive – Point Runner: Build up to +20% movement speed over 2 second while near turrets and fallen turrets. 2600 Gold.
  • S Raptor Cloak item.png Raptor Cloak: +40 armor, +150% base health regen. Unique Passive – Point Runner: Build up to +20% movement speed over 2 second while near turrets and fallen turrets. 1100 Gold.
  • SCH Thornmail item.png Thornmail: +100 armorUnique Passive: Upon being hit by a basic attack, reflects magic damage back to the attacker equal to 25% of your bonus armor plus 15% of the incoming damage (before being reduced by defenses). 2300 Gold.
  • TC Wooglet's Witchcap item.png Wooglet's Witchcap: +45 armor, +100 ability power. Unique Passive: Increases ability power by 25%. Unique Active – Stasis: Champion becomes invulnerable and untargetable for 2.5 seconds, but is unable to move, attack, cast spells, or use items during this time (90 second cooldown). 3500 Gold.
  • SH Zhonya's Hourglass item.png Zhonya's Hourglass: +50 armor, +100 ability power. Unique Active – Stasis: Champion becomes invulnerable and untargetable for 2.5 seconds, but is unable to move, attack, cast spells, or use items during this time (90 second cooldown). 3000 Gold.
  • S Zz'Rot Portal item.png Zz'Rot Portal: +60 armor, +60 magic resist, +150% base health regen. Unique Passive – Point Runner: Build up to +20% movement speed over 2 second while near turrets, fallen turrets and Void Gates. Unique Active: Spawns a Void Gate at target location for 150 seconds. Every 4 seconds the gate makes a VoidspawnSquare.png Voidspawn that travels down the nearest lane and decays over time. Voidspawn explodes when attacking structures. VoidspawnSquare.png Voidspawn ignore champions and void targets (150 second cooldown). The first and every fourth voidspawn gain 15% of maximum health as damage (150 second cooldown). 2750 Gold.

Champion abilities

Note: Only the armor buff effect of these abilities is shown here, to read more information on each of these abilities, follow the link on each of them.

  • AniviaSquare.png Anivia's Rebirth.png Rebirth allows her to enter an egg-state for up to 6 seconds upon reaching 0 health. While in this state, she will receive an armor modifier of −40 / −25 / −10 / +5 / +20.
  • AnnieSquare.png Annie's Molten Shield.png Molten Shield increases her armor by 10 / 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 for 5 seconds.
  • BraumSquare.png Braum's Stand Behind Me.png Stand Behind Me increases armor by 15 / 17.5 / 20 / 22.5 / 25 + (10 / 11.5 / 13 / 14.5 / 16% bonus armor) to himself and the target ally for 3 seconds.
  • GalioSquare.png Galio's Bulwark.png Bulwark increases an allied champion's armor by 30 / 45 / 60 / 75 / 90 for 4 seconds.
  • GnarSquare.png Gnar's Rage Gene.png Rage Gene increases his armor by (2 × level) when transform into Mega GnarSquare.png Mega Gnar.
  • GarenSquare.png Garen's Courage.png Courage permanently gains 0.25 bonus armor every time he kills an enemy, up to a maximum of 30.
  • GravesSquare.png Graves's True Grit.png True Grit increases his armor by 1 / 2 / 3 every second he remains in combat. This bonus stacks up to 10 times. Graves is considered in combat if he has dealt or received damage in the last 3 seconds.
  • JayceSquare.png Jayce's Transform- Mercury Hammer.png Transform: Mercury Hammer increases his armor by 5 / 15 / 25 / 35.
  • KennenSquare.png Kennen's Lightning Rush.png Lightning Rush increases his armor by 10 / 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 for 4 seconds.
  • LeonaSquare.png Leona's Eclipse.png Eclipse increases her armor by 20 / 30 / 40 / 50 / 60 + (20% bonus armor) for 3 seconds, deals damage after that time to units around her, and retains the defensive buff for an additional 3 seconds if any enemy is struck by the blast.
  • MalphiteSquare.png Malphite's Brutal Strikes.png Brutal Strikes passively grants armor to himself equal to 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30% of his total armor.
  • MordekaiserSquare.png Mordekaiser's Creeping Death.png Creeping Death increases an allied unit's armor by 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 for 6 seconds.
  • OlafSquare.png Olaf's Ragnarok.png Ragnarok passively increases his armor by 10 / 20 / 30 when he is not under the effects of Ragnarok.png Ragnarok.
  • OriannaSquare.png Orianna's Command- Protect.png Command: Protect increases an allied champion's armor by 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 for as long as the ball is attached to them.
  • PoppySquare.png Poppy's Paragon of Demacia.png Paragon of Demacia increases her armor by 1.5 / 2 / 2.5 / 3 / 3.5 for 5 seconds upon attacking or being hit by an enemy, stacks up to 10 times. She can also activate this ability to gain max stacks.
  • RammusSquare.png Rammus's Defensive Ball Curl.png Defensive Ball Curl increases his armor by 40 / 60 / 80 / 100 / 120 for 6 seconds, and deals 15 / 25 / 35 / 45 / 55 + (10% armor) magic damage to enemies who basic attack him.
  • RengarSquare.png Rengar's Battle Roar.png Battle Roar Rengar lets out a battle roar, damaging enemies increases his armor by 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 for 4 seconds. Rengar gains additional 50% armor for each enemy champion or large monster hit.
  • SejuaniSquare.png Sejuani's Frost Armor.png Frost Armor grants her 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 bonus armor each times she damages an enemy with an ability or attack for 2 seconds. Subsequent damage will increase the duration by 2 seconds up to a cap of 8 seconds, after where damage will refresh the duration.
  • ShyvanaSquare.png Shyvana's Dragonborn.png Dragonborn passively increases her armor by 5 / 10 / 15 / 20. This bonus is doubled while she is in Dragon Form (20 / 30 / 40).
  • SingedSquare.png Singed's Insanity Potion.png Insanity Potion increases his armor by 35 / 50 / 80 for 25 seconds.
  • TaricSquare.png Taric's Shatter.png Shatter passively grants 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 bonus armor to himself and 12% of his total armor to himself and nearby allied champions.
  • ThreshSquare.png Thresh's Damnation.png Damnation passively generates souls for him to collect, with each soul collected granting 0.75 armor permanently.
  • TrundleSquare.png Trundle's Subjugate.png Subjugate steals instantly 20% of the target's armor. He continues to drain an additional 20% the target's armor over 4 second before decaying 4 seconds after the drain completes.
  • UrgotSquare.png Urgot's Hyper-Kinetic Position Reverser.png Hyper-Kinetic Position Reverser increases his armor by 60 / 90 / 120 for 5 seconds upon activation.
  • WukongSquare.png Wukong's Stone Skin.png Stone Skin passively grants him 4 / 6 / 8 armor for each nearby enemy champion.
  • XinZhaoSquare.png Xin Zhao's Crescent Sweep.png Crescent Sweep increases his armor by 15 / 20 / 25 for each enemy champion hit for 8 seconds.

Masteries

  • Enchanted Armor mastery s4.png Enchanted Armor increases bonus armor and magic resistance by 2.5 / 5 / 7.5 / 10%.
  • Hardiness mastery s4.png Hardiness increases your champion's armor by 2 / 3.5 / 5.
  • Legendary Guardian mastery s4.png Legendary Guardian grants your champion 3 armor and 3 magic resistance for each nearby enemy champion

Runes

Name Type Tier 1 (Lesser) Tier 2 (Normal) Tier 3 (Greater)
Armor Mark

GMarks (1)

X X 0.91

205 IP

Seal

GSeals (1)

0.56

5 IP

0.78

35 IP

1

205 IP

Glyph

GGlyphs (1)

X X 0.7

205 IP

Quintessence

GQuintessences (1)

2.37

15 IP

3.32

100 IP

4.26

1025 IP

Armor, scaling

(Armor per level)

Mark X X X
Seal

GSeals (2)

X X 0.16 per level (3)

410 IP

Glyph X X X
Quintessence

GQuintessences (2)

X X 0.38 per level (6.84)

1025 IP

Ways to reduce armor

See armor penetration. Note that armor penetration and armor reduction are different.

Armor vs. Health

HP Armor LW VS

Note: The following information also applies to Magic Resist.

It can be helpful to understand the equilibrium between maximum HP and Armor, which is represented in the graph[1] on the right. The equilibrium line represents the point at which your champion will have the highest Effective Health against that damage type, while the smaller lines represent the baseline progression for each kind of champion from level 1-18 without items. The most important point to keep in mind when studying this graph is the fact that HP is much easier to come by in a full item build, therefore you should not worry about trying to hit the exact equilibrium. You can also see that for a somewhat brief period in the early game HP is the most gold efficient purchase.

There are many other factors which can effect whether you should buy more Armor or HP, such as these key examples:

  • Whether or not the enemy is capable of delivering true damage or percent health damage, thus reducing the value of HP stacking.
  • The presence of resist or HP steroids built into your champion's kit, such as in LeonaSquare.png Leona's Eclipse.png Eclipse or ChoGathSquare.png Cho'Gath's Feast.png Feast.
  • Against sustained damage Life steal and healing abilities can be considered as contributing to your maximum HP (while being mostly irrelevant against burst damage).
  • The need to prioritize specific items mainly for their other qualities (regardless of whether or not they contribute towards the ideal balance between HP and resists).

List of champions' armor

The highest and lowest base armor champions
Champion Level Top 5 champions Bottom 5 champions
Level 1 1. RammusSquare.png Rammus 31.384 armor 1. ThreshSquare.png Thresh 16 armor
2. DariusSquare.png Darius 29.88 armor 2. OriannaSquare.png Orianna 17.04 armor
3. SejuaniSquare.png Sejuani 29.54 armor 3. LuxSquare.png Lux 18.72 armor
4. SkarnerSquare.png Skarner 29.384 armor 4. KalistaSquare.png Kalista 19.012 armor
4. VayneSquare.png Vayne
5. ChoGathSquare.png Cho'Gath 28.88 armor 5. AzirSquare.png Azir 19.04 armor
5. HeimerdingerSquare.png Heimerdinger
Level 18 1. RammusSquare.png Rammus 104.484 armor 1. ThreshSquare.png Thresh 16 armor
2. BraumSquare.png Braum 103.22 armor 2. GnarSquare.png Gnar 65.5 armor
3. DariusSquare.png Darius 97.88 armor 3. OriannaSquare.png Orianna 68.04 armor
4. PoppySquare.png Poppy 96.72 armor 4. AzirSquare.png Azir 70.04 armor
4. MaokaiSquare.png Maokai 4. HeimerdingerSquare.png Heimerdinger
5. HecarimSquare.png Hecarim 94.72 armor 5. ZyraSquare.png Zyra 71.04 armor

Trivia

[Last updated 1/9/2015 on patch 5.16]

  • One of the biggest amount of armor any champion can obtain, aside from ThreshSquare.png Thresh, is 1649.975792 (which reduces physical damage by 94.286%), being a level 18 MalphiteSquare.png Malphite.

MalphiteSquare.png Malphite must have:

Relevant mathematics:
TaricSquare.png Taric Armor = ((6 × 100 + 15 + 5 + 30 + 0.91 × 9 + 3 × 9 + 0.7 × 9 + 6.84 × 3) × 1.10) + 88.8 = 872.011
BraumSquare.png Braum Bonus Armor (before Stand Behind Me.png Stand Behind Me) = (6 × 100 + 15 + 5 + (872.011 × 0.12) + 0.91 × 9 + 3 × 9 + 0.7 × 9 + 6.84 × 3) × 1.10 = 865.316452
MalphiteSquare.png Malphite Armor = (((6 × 100 + 15 + 5 + 90 + 30 + (872.011 × 0.12) + (25 + 865.316452 × 0.16) + 0.91 × 9 + 3 × 9 + 0.7 × 9 + 6.84 × 3) × 1.10) + 92.1) × 1.30 = 1649.975792

Having an enemy TrundleSquare.png Trundle with the same setup use Subjugate.png Subjugate on MalphiteSquare.png Malphite will yield a total of 1976.501496 armor. This is the highest possible finite amount of armor (without using metagame effects—see below), and reduces physical damage by 95.184%.

Relevant mathematics:

MalphiteSquare.png Malphite Armor = (((6 × 100 + 15 + 5 + 90 + 30 + (872.011 × 0.12) + (25 + 865.316452 × 0.16) + 0.91 × 9 + 3 × 9 + 0.7 × 9 + 6.84 × 3) × 1.10) + 92.1) × 1.30 = 1649.975792
TrundleSquare.png Trundle Armor = ((6 × 100 + 15 + 5 + 90 + 30 + (872.011 × 0.12) + (25 + 865.316452 × 0.16) + 0.91 × 9 + 3 × 9 + 0.7 × 9 + 6.84 × 3 + (1649.975792 × 0.4)) × 1.10) + 73.4 = 1976.501496

It is still possible to go higher through metagame functions. If a summoner disconnects from the server and is in the fountain, his champion will gain 1000 armor. With the same setup as above, a disconnected GarenSquare.png Garen with a disconnected TaricSquare.png Taric will have approximately 2779 armor. TrundleSquare.png Trundle cannot exceed this. This reduces physical damage by 96.5%.

ThreshSquare.png Thresh, with his effectively infinite stacking, can obtain a maximum of 749999.25 armor off his passive alone. With the same set-up as above, he can obtain a total of about 788575 armor, reducing physical damage by 99.9873205%. If he disconnects, he can obtain up to 789626 armor, reducing it by 99.987337%

References

  1. Should you buy Armor or Health?

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