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Blocking

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Blocking is a means of preventing damage from enemy attacks by fending with a shield, staff or dual wielded weapons.

The base chance to block when using a shield (24-32%) or a staff (12-18%) is determined by the base item type. When dual wielding, the base chance to block is 15% no matter which weapons are used.

Additional chance to block can be gained by taking certain passive skills, using Tempest Shield, equipping a shield with the modifier Local Additional Block Chance %, or equipping unique items such as The Bringer of RainThe Bringer of Rain
Nightmare Bascinet
Armour: (423 to 564)
Evasion Rating: (609 to 812)
Requires Level 67, 62 Str, 85 DexGems in this item are Supported by level 18 Melee Physical Damage
Gems in this item are Supported by level 12 Faster Attacks
Gems in this item are supported by level 6 Blind
Adds 20–30 Physical Damage
(200 to 300)% increased Armour and Evasion
+(120 to 160) to maximum Life
20% chance to gain an Endurance Charge when you Block
Extra gore
Can't use Chest armour
6% Chance to Block
"What lies beneath your feet?!"
"Sacred ground, watered with tears of blood!"
.

Usually only attacks can be blocked, but there are passives and unique items that apply a percentage of block chance to spells. For example, the unique amulet Stone of LazhwarStone of Lazhwar
Lapis Amulet
Requires Level 5+(20 to 30) to Intelligence50% of Block Chance applied to Spells
(10 to 15)% increased Cast Speed
+(30 to 50) to maximum Mana
You are slow, foolish and ignorant.
I am not.
grants 50% of Block Chance applied to Spells. A character with 40% block chance would have 40% (attack) block chance and 20% spell block chance with the unique equipped.

Block chance is capped at 75%. The chance to block spells is also capped at 75%. The only exception comes from the unique The AnvilThe Anvil
Amber Amulet
Requires Level 45+(20 to 30) to Strength10% reduced Attack Speed
10% reduced Cast Speed
+(400 to 500) to Armour
+(34 to 48) Life gained when you Block
+(10 to 24) Mana gained when you Block
20% reduced Movement Speed
+3% to maximum Block Chance
8% Chance to Block
Reflects 240–300 Physical Damage to Attackers on Block
Forge your Perseverance on the Anvil of Faith.
which raises the cap to 78%.

Mechanics

Blocking an attack prevents all damage and harmful effects including status ailments. Reflected damage can be blocked[1]; however, blocking reflected damage will not trigger on-block effects.

When an attack is blocked, the game also calculates if the attack would have caused a stun were it not blocked. If it would have caused a stun, the blocking animation is played, stunning you briefly. If it would not have caused a stun, then you get a "free" block with no animation. Faster Block and Stun Recovery and Increased Block Recovery modifiers reduce the length of the blocking animation.

The following formula is the complete calculation for the duration of the blocking animation (in milliseconds). If you cannot be stunned, the block animation will never play.

Block Duration = 350 / ( 1 + Block and Stun Recovery + Block Recovery )

Status ailments have no affect on your block chance, but being frozen will prevent the block animation from playing if it otherwise would, and chilled will make it take longer to play (since those two work by decreasing the speed at which your character plays animations).

On hit effects from skills like Glacial Hammer and Viper Strike will still apply because block doesn't prevent a successful hit. However, skill effects based on damage like Puncture are essentially blocked.[2]

Related Unique Items

A number of unique items give bonuses to block, either by directly granting additional block chance, or indirectly by enhancing it in various ways. Note: Only unique items with explicit block-related mods are listed here. Ofcourse, all shields and staffs have implicit chance to block and they also apply on uniques, but they are not shown here.

Additional Block Chance

  • Aegis AuroraAegis Aurora
    Champion Kite Shield
    Chance to Block: 32%
    Armour: (337 to 374)
    Energy Shield: (99 to 110)
    Requires Level 62, 85 Str, 85 Int(10 to 20)% increased Elemental Damage with Weapons
    (80 to 100)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
    +10% to all Elemental Resistances
    +5% to maximum Cold Resistance
    6% additional Block Chance
    Replenishes Energy Shield by 2% of Armour when you Block
    Born from the marriage of ice and sky, the aurora evokes both awe and power.
  • Crest of PerandusCrest of Perandus
    Pine Buckler
    Chance to Block: 31%
    Evasion Rating: 44
    Requires Level 8, 26 Dex3% of Physical Attack Damage Leeched as Life
    +(60 to 80) to maximum Life
    (5.0 to 7.5) Life Regenerated per second
    +30% to Lightning Resistance
    5% additional Block Chance
    "With piety and justice."
    – Perandus family motto
  • KaltenhaltKaltenhalt
    Painted Buckler
    Chance to Block: 29%
    Evasion Rating: (210 to 262)
    Requires Level 16, 44 Dex(60 to 100)% increased Evasion Rating
    +5% to maximum Cold Resistance
    +50% to Cold Resistance
    Reflects (25 to 50) Cold Damage to Melee Attackers
    5% additional Block Chance
    Cold, miserable and alone... but alive.
  • Lioneye's RemorseLioneye's Remorse
    Pinnacle Tower Shield
    Chance to Block: 30%
    Armour: (1218 to 1421)
    Requires Level 70, 159 Str(200 to 250)% increased Armour
    +(80 to 100) to maximum Life
    5% reduced Movement Speed
    20% increased Block and Stun Recovery
    −25 Physical Damage taken from Projectile Attacks
    5% additional Block Chance
    Marceus' unblemished shield is a testament to his arrogance... and his fate.
  • The Bringer of RainThe Bringer of Rain
    Nightmare Bascinet
    Armour: (423 to 564)
    Evasion Rating: (609 to 812)
    Requires Level 67, 62 Str, 85 DexGems in this item are Supported by level 18 Melee Physical Damage
    Gems in this item are Supported by level 12 Faster Attacks
    Gems in this item are supported by level 6 Blind
    Adds 20–30 Physical Damage
    (200 to 300)% increased Armour and Evasion
    +(120 to 160) to maximum Life
    20% chance to gain an Endurance Charge when you Block
    Extra gore
    Can't use Chest armour
    6% Chance to Block
    "What lies beneath your feet?!"
    "Sacred ground, watered with tears of blood!"
  • The AnvilThe Anvil
    Amber Amulet
    Requires Level 45+(20 to 30) to Strength10% reduced Attack Speed
    10% reduced Cast Speed
    +(400 to 500) to Armour
    +(34 to 48) Life gained when you Block
    +(10 to 24) Mana gained when you Block
    20% reduced Movement Speed
    +3% to maximum Block Chance
    8% Chance to Block
    Reflects 240–300 Physical Damage to Attackers on Block
    Forge your Perseverance on the Anvil of Faith.
    (also increases maximum block chance)
  • Thousand Teeth TemuThousand Teeth Temu
    Vaal Buckler
    Chance to Block: 32%
    Evasion Rating: 504
    Requires Level 63, 159 Dex(100 to 120)% increased Evasion Rating
    +(70 to 90) to Maximum Life
    2% of Physical Attack Damage Leeched as Life
    5% additional Block Chance
    Reflects 1–1000 Physical Damage to Attackers on Block
    Crimson burn'd the star of sadness,
    All was woe that seem'd but gladness.
  • RearguardRearguard
    Broadhead Arrow Quiver
    Requires Level 28Adds 6–12 Physical Damage+(400 to 450) to Armour
    (20 to 30)% increased Projectile Speed
    50% increased Block and Stun Recovery
    (15 to 20)% increased Projectile Damage
    (20 to 24)% Chance to Block
    (12 to 15)% Chance to Block Spells
    "It's a rare man that has eyes in the back of his head."
    - Kiravi, Vaal Archer

Additional Block Chance while Dual Wielding

  • Prismatic EclipsePrismatic Eclipse
    Twilight Blade
    One Handed Sword
    Physical Damage: (43–97 to 53–106)
    Critical Strike Chance: 5%
    Attacks per Second: 1.30
    Requires Level 53, 91 Str, 91 Dex18% Increased Accuracy Rating10% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
    Adds (20–31 to 30–40) Physical Damage
    25% increased Physical Damage with Weapons per Red Socket
    12% increased Global Attack Speed per Green Socket
    2% of Physical Attack Damage Leeched as Mana per Blue Socket
    +2 to Melee Weapon Range per White Socket
    "A raging Solaris seared and contorted the orb's surface.
    A despairing Lunaris filled the scars with her tears.
    Yet Viridi remained, trapped within, forever more."
    - Azmerian Creation Myth
  • Ungil's GaucheUngil's Gauche
    Boot Knife
    Dagger
    Physical Damage: (13–52 to 14–58)
    Elemental Damage: 3–30
    Critical Strike Chance: 6.8%
    Attacks per Second: 1.54
    Requires Level 20, 31 Dex, 45 Int40% increased Global Critical Strike Chance12% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
    (80 to 100)% increased Physical Damage
    +(10 to 20) to Dexterity
    Adds 3–30 Lightning Damage
    10% increased Attack Speed
    50% increased Global Critical Strike Chance
    Unwieldy and garish became graceful and deadly in Ungil's nimble hands.
  • Essentia SanguisEssentia Sanguis
    Eye Gouger
    Claw
    Physical Damage: (47–122 to 57–150)
    Elemental Damage: 1–50
    Critical Strike Chance: 6.68%
    Attacks per Second: (1.62 to 1.76)
    Requires Level 64, 113 Dex, 113 Int3% of Physical Damage Leeched as Life8% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding Claws
    (140 to 180)% increased Physical Damage
    Adds 1–80 Lightning Damage
    (20 to 30)% increased Attack Speed
    +(30 to 40) to maximum Energy Shield
    Ghost Reaver
    The darkest clouds clashed and coupled, giving birth to four lightning children of hate.
  • Wings of EntropyWings of Entropy
    Sundering Axe
    Two Handed Axe
    Physical Damage: (121–248 to 147–304)
    Elemental Damage: (55–100 to 65–120)
    Chaos Damage: (55–100 to 65–120)
    Critical Strike Chance: 5%
    Attacks per Second: 1.20
    Requires Level 60, 149 Str, 76 Dex25% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    8% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
    (80 to 120)% increased Physical Damage
    Adds (55–100 to 65–120) Fire Damage in Main Hand
    Adds (55–100 to 65–120) Chaos Damage in Off Hand
    Counts as Dual Wielding
    Fire and Anarchy are the most reliable agents of change.

% Applied to Spell Block

  • Stone of LazhwarStone of Lazhwar
    Lapis Amulet
    Requires Level 5+(20 to 30) to Intelligence50% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    (10 to 15)% increased Cast Speed
    +(30 to 50) to maximum Mana
    You are slow, foolish and ignorant.
    I am not.
  • RainbowstrideRainbowstride
    Conjurer Boots
    Energy Shield: (106 to 123)Requires Level 53, 94 Int(20 to 25)% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    +(40 to 60) to maximum Mana
    (140 to 180)% increased Energy Shield
    +20% to all Elemental Resistances
    20% increased Movement Speed
    "They say that you should take life's troubles in your stride.
    Some men have a longer stride than others."
    - Gaius Sentari
  • Rathpith GlobeRathpith Globe
    Titanium Spirit Shield
    Chance to Block: 25%
    Energy Shield: (184 to 218)
    Requires Level 68, 159 Int(40 to 60)% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    (40 to 60)% increased Spell Damage
    10% increased maximum Life
    (120 to 160)% increased Energy Shield
    +25% to Lightning Resistance
    The Vaal emptied their slaves of beating hearts, and left a mountain of twitching dead.
  • Daresso's CourageDaresso's Courage
    Baroque Round Shield
    Chance to Block: (27 to 30)%
    Armour: (212 to 233)
    Evasion Rating: (212 to 233)
    Requires Level 54, 70 Str, 70 Dex120% increased Block Recovery20% increased Physical Damage
    (100 to 120)% increased Armour and Evasion
    +(10 to 20)% to Fire Resistance
    +(10 to 20)% to Cold Resistance
    +(10 to 20)% to Lightning Resistance
    120% of Block Chance applied to Spells when on Low Life
    (3 to 6)% additional Block Chance
    By tourney's end, Daresso bled and shivered. Yet even accursed treachery failed to steal the champion's victory.
  • Saffell's FrameSaffell's Frame
    Branded Kite Shield
    Chance to Block: 24%
    Armour: 194
    Energy Shield: 57
    Requires Level 59, 76 Str, 76 Int+4% to all Elemental Resistances(70 to 80)% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    (20 to 30)% increased Spell Damage
    +10% to all Elemental Resistances
    +4% to all maximum Resistances
    Cannot Block Attacks
    A swift mind solves problems before they occur
  • Wings of EntropyWings of Entropy
    Sundering Axe
    Two Handed Axe
    Physical Damage: (121–248 to 147–304)
    Elemental Damage: (55–100 to 65–120)
    Chaos Damage: (55–100 to 65–120)
    Critical Strike Chance: 5%
    Attacks per Second: 1.20
    Requires Level 60, 149 Str, 76 Dex25% of Block Chance applied to Spells
    8% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
    (80 to 120)% increased Physical Damage
    Adds (55–100 to 65–120) Fire Damage in Main Hand
    Adds (55–100 to 65–120) Chaos Damage in Off Hand
    Counts as Dual Wielding
    Fire and Anarchy are the most reliable agents of change.

miscellaneous

  • Cybil's PawCybil's Paw
    Thresher Claw
    Claw
    Physical Damage: 22–58
    Critical Strike Chance: 6.8%
    Attacks per Second: 1.10
    Requires Level 37, 53 Dex, 77 Int+15 Life gained for each enemy hit by your Attacks(8 to 12)% increased Cast Speed
    +(30 to 40) to maximum Mana
    +(5 to 8) Life gained for each enemy hit by your Spells
    6% increased Spell Damage per 5% Block Chance
    Tread lightly, lest their vigil find you.
    Speak softly, lest their reason fend you.
    Cut gently, lest their spirit haunt you.
  • Titucius' SpanTitucius' Span
    Reinforced Tower Shield
    Chance to Block: 23%
    Armour: (398 to 448)
    Requires Level 30, 76 Str(60 to 80)% increased Armour
    +(30 to 50) to maximum Life
    −10 Physical Damage taken from Projectile Attacks
    200% increased Armour against Projectiles
    +25% additional Block Chance against Projectiles
    A mighty bulwark, curved and strong
    A dauntless wall, against the throng
    All lance and arrow, knocked aside
    For rout of foe, for turn of tide.
  • Lightbane RaimentLightbane Raiment
    Ornate Ringmail
    Armour: (407 to 444)
    Energy Shield: (119 to 130)
    Requires Level 47, 69 Str, 69 Int(120 to 140)% increased Armour and Energy Shield
    10% of Physical Damage Converted to Chaos Damage
    Reflects 30 Chaos Damage to Melee Attackers
    25% reduced Light Radius
    100% chance on Block to create Desecrated Ground
    ... And the Light faded and hope waned
    Zahndethus cast aside his faith
    and embraced the darkness.
  • Zahndethus' CassockZahndethus' Cassock
    Sage's Robe
    Energy Shield: (138 to 158)Requires Level 37, 104 IntAdds 1–40 Lightning Damage
    (75 to 100)% increased Energy Shield
    +(40 to 50) to Chaos Resistance
    25% increased Light Radius
    100% chance on Block to create Consecrated Ground
    When dead men rise and darkness falls
    Only faith can be your walls
    Walls of Light, not of brick
    Twice as strong and twice as thick
  • Rumi's ConcoctionRumi's Concoction
    Granite Flask
    Lasts 4 Seconds
    Consumes 30 of 60 Charges on use
    +3000 to Armour
    Requires Level 68(20 to 30)% Chance to Block during flask effect
    (10 to 15)% Chance to Block Spells during flask effect
    "Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself."
    - Rumi of the Vaal
    Right click to drink. Can only hold charges while in belt. Refills as you kill monsters.

Passive skills

There are passive skills that grant blocking bonuses.

Chance to block with shields

These passive skills grant additional chance to block with a shield equipped.

Name Bonuses
Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
Block and Damage Reflection
  • 1% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 5% of Melee Physical Damage taken reflected to Attacker
Block Chance and Elemental Resistance with Shields
  • 1% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • +5% Elemental Resistances while holding a Shield
Shield Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block with Shields
Shield Block and Block Recovery
  • 1% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 40% increased Block Recovery
Aegis
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 40% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Command of Steel
  • 2% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 60% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Deflection
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 40% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Iron Wall
  • 3% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 60% increased Block Recovery
  • 45% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Plated Defences
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 50% increased Armour from equipped Shield
Precise Interception
  • 3% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 60% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Sanctuary
  • 3% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • +12% Elemental Resistances while holding a Shield
Slashing Comeback
  • 4% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 24% increased Physical Damage with Swords
  • 20% increased Accuracy Rating with Swords
Spiritual Guardian
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 50% increased Energy Shield from equipped Shield
Testudo
  • 3% additional Shield Block Chance
  • 60% increased Block Recovery
  • +8 Mana gained when you Block
Wall of Thorns
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 20% increased Block Recovery
  • 10% of Melee Physical Damage taken reflected to Attacker
Weapon Artistry
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 20% increased Melee Physical Damage
  • +20 to Dexterity

Chance to block with staves

These passive skills grant additional chance to block with a staff equipped.

Name Bonuses
Staff Block
  • 2% additional Block Chance with Staves
Battle Staff Training
  • 20% increased Physical Damage with Staves
  • 4% increased Attack Speed with Staves
  • 4% additional Block Chance with Staves
Whirling Barrier
  • 10% chance to gain a Power Charge when you Block
  • 6% additional Block Chance with Staves

Chance to block while dual wielding

These passive skills grant additional chance to block while dual wielding.

Name Bonuses
Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
Dual Wield Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
Dual Wield Damage and Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Blade Barrier
  • 3% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 50% increased Block Recovery
  • 18% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Bravado
  • 4% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 12% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Dervish
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 24% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
  • 6% increased Attack Speed while Dual Wielding
Gemini
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 20% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
  • 15% increased Accuracy Rating while Dual Wielding
Slashing Comeback
  • 4% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 24% increased Physical Damage with Swords
  • 20% increased Accuracy Rating with Swords
Weapon Artistry
  • 2% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding or holding a Shield
  • 20% increased Melee Physical Damage
  • +20 to Dexterity

Chance to block spells with shields

These passive skills grant additional chance to block spells with a shield equipped.

Name Bonuses
Shield Spell Block
  • 2% additional Chance to Block Spells with Shield
Mind Barrier
  • 8% additional Chance to Block Spells with Shield

Block recovery

These passive skills grant increased block recovery.

Name Bonuses
Block and Stun Recovery
    • 15% increased Block and Stun Recovery
    • 30% increased Block and Stun Recovery
Block Recovery
  • 40% increased Block Recovery
Shield Block and Block Recovery
  • 1% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 40% increased Block Recovery
Blade Barrier
  • 3% additional Chance to Block while Dual Wielding
  • 50% increased Block Recovery
  • 18% increased Physical Weapon Damage while Dual Wielding
Iron Wall
  • 3% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 60% increased Block Recovery
  • 45% increased Defences from equipped Shield
Stun Mastery
  • 10% reduced Enemy Stun Threshold
  • 30% increased Stun Duration on enemies
  • 50% increased Block and Stun Recovery
Wall of Thorns
  • 4% additional Chance to Block with Shields
  • 20% increased Block Recovery
  • 10% of Melee Physical Damage taken reflected to Attacker

Chance to block for minions

These passive skills grant additional chance to block for minions.

Name Bonuses
Minion Block
  • Minions have 2% Chance to Block

References

  1. Mark_GGG (December 3, 2012). "Mechanics Thread". Path of Exile Forum. Retrieved October 21, 2013.
  2. Mark_GGG (November 5, 2012). "Viper Strike overriding block chance/dodge/evasion". Path of Exile Forum. Retrieved October 21, 2013.