There are many cards in Legends of Runeterra, and each have their own stats and effects to make them unique. It can be overwhelming, especially if you’re new to the card game genre, to learn all these effects. That’s why we’re dissecting all the keywords in a series of guides. In this one we’re taking a look at Tough.
Units that bear the Tough keyword have a protective layer around them, and one more permanent than the Barrier keyword provides. Through a thick layer of armor, Tough units reduce all incoming damage by 1. This means that, if your Tough unit is attacked by an enemy with one attack power, or is hit by a spell that deals one damage, your unit walks away unscathed. When combat seems even, the Tough keyword is there to give you a small edge over the opponent.
Only followers from Demacia have the Tough keyword. There are two niche cases among champions: Tryndamere becomes Tough upon reaching his second level, and Heimerdinger generates a 2/1 turret with Tough whenever you cast a two-cost spell.
Below are some examples of cards that work with the Tough keyword.
It’s not the most impressive unit, but Plucky Poro has multiple uses. It’s a great defender against aggressive, board-flooding strategies. Small critters, like spiderlings, are rendered useless against it, especially if it has received a few buffs. Another use is simply as a blocker, like most Poros can be used. At one mana it can very easily be squeezed in during a turn, and hold off large enemies for an extra turn.
In just about every way, Vanguard Defender is simply two Plucky Poros stacked on top of each other. Overall Vanguard Defender is a bit more useful though, as generally the enemy runs more units with two attack power than with one.
If you want to make sure a unit survives a little longer, you can don them a Chain Vest. At just one mana the spell is extremely cheap. Since it’s a Burst spell your opponent has no time to prevent its effect. Especially if you’ve saved up spell mana from the previous round, can catch them off guard, and swing the game in your favor.
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