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True damage

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True damage is one of the three types of damage in League of Legends, the others being magic damage and physical damage. True damage ignores armor and magic resistance, as well as other forms of damage reduction such as  Unbreakable Will and  Vengeful Maelstrom.

Blocking true damage

Abilities or summoner spells which deal true damage are still blocked by effects that prevent damage such as the passive on Banshee's Veil,  Sivir's  Spell Shield,  Nocturne's  Shroud of Darkness, and Standard Attacks which deal additional true damage are still capable of being blocked by  Pantheon's  Aegis Protection.  Kayle's  Intervention will block all damage to a target champion, including true damage. Before the removal of Dodge, both true damage as an on-hit effect and true damage on standard attack were capable of being avoided completely if the standard attack was dodged, however during the effect of  Counter Strike,  Jax can still effectively dodge true damage from on-hit effects and true damage from standard attacks.

Countering true damage

Although true damage cannot be directly mitigated, it is possible to diminish its relative effect by stacking health or using shields.

  • Building health causes sources of flat true damage (eg.  Cho'Gath's  Feast) to effectively deal a lesser percentage of total health. This only partially applies to  Vayne's  Silver Bolts, because it scales based on maximum health.
    • Reducing Vayne's attack speed (via items such as Frozen Heart or Randuin's Omen) mitigates damage from  Silver Bolts by reducing how often it procs. The bonus resist/health also diminish physical damage effects, which usually comprise the large majority of Vayne's total damage.
    • For each Silver Bolt proc, bonus health is effectively equal to (1 - % True damage) * (bonus health). For rank 5  Silver Bolts, this means Bonus Health over 12 autoattacks remains 87% effective—still quite efficient. For all the above reasons, health constitutes an essential aspect of efficiently countering  Vayne's damage output, contrary to popular belief.
  • Absorption shields such as  Janna's  Eye Of The Storm absorb true damage and do not count towards max health; therefore, they protect equally well vs. all sources of true damage.
  • Magic-only shields such as  Morgana's  Black Shield and the passive on Hexdrinker and Maw of Malmortius will have no impact on true damage.

Dealing true damage

Champions who deal true damage with standard attacks

Champions who deal true damage with abilities

Items

Summoner spells

  • Ignite
  • Smite (only to minions, neutral monsters, and pets.)

Neutral Buffs

Neutral Monsters

Notes

  • Despite popular belief, champions whose abilities have health costs associated with them do not deal true damage to themselves when they use an ability which requires health to cast.
    • This can be evidenced when they have an absorption shield on them, when they use their health-based ability, the cost of it penetrates the shield and directly drains the health of the user, in contrary to true damage that has to break any absorption shield on the target to reach its hitpoints.
  • The Nexus Obelisk (spawn point) turrets at the heart of either team's base deals 1000 true damage which cannot be mitigated by any means, even by abilities that make the champion invulnerable.
    • Prior to patch V1.0.0.108, shields and invulnerability worked against these turrets, effectively allowing some champions to "safely" dive into the enemy spawn.
  • True damage is unaffected by damage reductions such as Exhaust.
  • True damage is not amplified by the mastery Executioner.
  • As of patch V3.15, true damage is no longer amplified by abilities such as  Poppy's  Diplomatic Immunity,  Swain's  Torment, and  Talon's  Cutthroat.

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