Further study of defensive items takes us to armour bonuses. Armour not only protects against champions’ physical attacks but also against minions; whether neutral or not. This makes armour a good counter to carries and an important stat for junglers.
The table below can be sorted by clicking on each header. The last column provides us with the cost effectiveness of each item according to its armour bonus. A few expected and unexpected results come up after sorting the table.
|Aegis of the Legion||30||+270 Health, +24 MR, UNIQUE Aura: +12 Armor / +15 MR / +8 AD to nearby allied units||1925||64|
|Atma’s Impaler||45||+18% CS, UNIQUE Passive: 2% of your maximum health is added to your AD||2405||53|
|Doran’s Shield||10||+120 Health, +8 Hp5||475||48|
|Frozen Heart||99||+500 Mana, UNIQUE Passive: 20% CDR and reduces the AS of nearby enemies by 20%||2775||28|
|Glacial Shroud||45||+425 Mana, UNIQUE Passive: 15% CDR||1525||34|
|Guardian Angel||68||+38 MR, UNIQUE Passive: revives your champion upon death, restoring 750 Health and 375 Mana. This effect can only occur once every 5 minutes||2600||38|
|Madred’s Bloodrazor||25||+30 AD, +40% AS, UNIQUE Passive: on hit, deals MD equal to 4% of the target’s maximum health||3800||152|
|Madred’s Razor||23||+15 AD, UNIQUE Passive: 15% chance on hitting a minion or monster to deal 500 bonus MD||1000||43|
|Ninja Tabi||25||+12% Dodge Chance, UNIQUE Passive: Enhanced Movement 2||850||34|
|Randuin’s Omen||75||+350 Health, +25 Hp5, UNIQUE Passive: 5% CDR and 20% chance on being hit to slow the attacker’s MS and AS by 35% for 3 sec., UNIQUE Active: slows MS and AS of surrounding units by 35% for 2 sec. + 0.5 sec. for each 100 Armor and Magic Resistance (60 sec. CD)||3075||41|
|Sunfire Cape||45||+450 Health, UNIQUE Passive: deals 35 MD per second to nearby enemies||2610||58|
|Thornmail||100||UNIQUE Passive: on being hit by standard attacks, returns 30% of damage taken as magic damage||2000||20|
|Warden’s Mail||50||+20 Hp5, Passive: 20% chance on being hit to slow the attacker’s MS and AS by 35% for 3 sec.||1350||27|
|Wriggle’s Lantern||30||+23 AD, +15% LS, UNIQUE Passive: 20% chance on hitting a minion or monster to deal 500 bonus magic damage. UNIQUE Active: places an invisible ward with 1100 range sight that lasts for 3 min. (3 min. CD)||1600||53|
|Zhonya’s Hourglass||50||+100 AP, UNIQUE Active: places your champion into Stasis for 2 sec., rendering you invulnerable and untargetable but unable to take any actions (90 sec. CD)||3100||62|
As is to be expected, the basic items are the most cost effective; what isn’t expected is the fast increase in cost when building advanced and legendary items. Thornmail is almost dedicated to providing armor and that’s the reason behind its cost-effectiveness. However, as the armor bonus decreases and other bonuses are added cost effectiveness plummets.
For instance, the gold cost per armor unit raises 43% from Chain Vest to Frozen Heart. Besides, no items provide as much armor as Thornmail and Frozen Heart. Therefore, armor has to be considered as a secondary stat when building these other items as it isn’t cost effective enough on its own.
Even a basic item as Doran’s Shield can justify its purchase on it health bonus but not on its armour bonus alone. Further, Randuin’s Omen provides the third biggest armour bonus; yet because of its numerous extra bonuses the price is inflated.
In conclusion, if armour is the first concern only Thornmail is an effective investment. All other items tend to treat armour as a secondary bonus. Frozen Heart, Randuin’s Omen or Guardian Angel do provide good amounts of armour but their additional bonuses should be taken into account to justify the expense.
– Acronyms: AD: attack damage, AP: ability power, AS: attack speed, CD: cooldown, CDR: cooldown reduction, CS: critical strike chance, Gp10: gold per 10 sec., Hp5: health regen per 5 sec., LS: life steal, MD: magic damage, Mp5: mana regen per 5 sec., MR: magic resist, MS: movement speed, PD: physical damage, SV: spell vamp
– Aegis of the Legion’s bonus armour corresponds to its flat bonus plus the aura bonus
– You can sort multiple columns by holding shift and clicking on other column headers